Skip to main content

Ferrlecit - My Favorite Iron

Is it possible to have a favorite iron?  Seems strange but, yes, I do have a favorite iron now.

Posted last time about how exhausted I was and I was exhausted.  When my ferritin levels get low, I just get so tired and try to fit in naps when I can.  I'm a pretty busy mom and just don't have time for that level of exhaustion.  Along with the exhaustion comes such guilt.  I feel so guilty for needing naps or just not being able to do it all. 

So, had my levels tested in February.  My hemoglobin was fine.  I think it was in the eleven range which is great for me.  My ferritin however was below 10.

Just a little side note:  If you are tired and suspect anemia, always ask for your ferritin numbers.  Even if your hemoglobin is normal, a really low ferritin score indicates that there is a problem and you will be anemic soon.  Often, exhaustion sets in once your ferritin is low.  You can avoid all the additional problem with anemia if you treat the low ferritin.  Iron pills will usually take care of this.  I've taken iron for so long though that it really hurts my stomach and so now I have infusions.

I had my last infusion in November.  Wrote about that experience here:

My Infusion with Ferrlecit

Ended up having only one infusion because of traveling and it worked wonderfully without all the usual side effects. 

The only part I didn't like that last time was that they 'pushed' it meaning they injected it into the vein over the course of several minutes.  I could feel it and didn't care for that feeling.  However, it was still preferable to side effects.  My blood pressure did drop but went back up shortly thereafter.

So, this time, same deal.  Ferrlecit.  I told the doctor I preferred this iron and she said she did too.  The nurses told me that they were no longer 'pushing' it into the vein now.  They found there was a higher risk of complications so they switched it over to a 20-minute drip. 

Because I've reacted before to iron, they started me with Benadryl in my IV.  I suspect this took about 20 minutes but the drug always makes me groggy so not too sure.  They then switched the bag.  No problems with it whatsoever.  Afterward, they added a bag of fluids.  Not sure why.  They don't usually do that but if it helps the process somehow, I'm fine with it.  My blood pressure stayed in the normal range this time and I went home about an hour and a half after I had arrived.

The only side effect I had was exhaustion.  My exhaustion after my initial infusions is even more pronounced than my exhaustion just before.  Not sure why this is but for four days I was so tired.  For this reason, I like to keep my infusions scheduled for Thursdays or Fridays.  Easier to rest on weekends. 

I told my doctor I'd be just fine having one infusion every three months.  Before this, I was having five every three to four months so she agreed that rather than do two, I could stick with one.  This makes it so much easier for me. 

It's been about three weeks now and I can tell my energy is up again.   I have to say Ferrlecit is the easiest iron I've had so far.  I know everybody is different and everybody reacts differently, but I'll continue with this iron until we figure out how to prevent my iron from dropping in the first place.

If you've had experiences with Ferrlecit, I'd love to hear from you.   If you are just going through infusions or about to go through one, I'd love to hear from you as well.  Take care!

Comments

  1. Hi Kay...I just had my first ever iron infusion last Friday with Ferrlecit. It was a slow iv that took 2 hours to run. I did not get benadryl and had no adverse reactions except for my BP dropping. However I woke the next morning so incredibly fatigued. I'm still very fatigued now 3 days later. I know this is your experience as well. How long do you find the fatigue lasting and how soon do you see /feel a difference in energy levels overall? Also I'm curious how high this iron gets your ferritin levels up to if you don't mind sharing. Thanks for your post. It has been reassuring to know where this exhaustion is most likely coming from. I was beginning to wonder if I'd done more harm than good.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I hope you are feeling a bit better now. When I first start a round of infusions (whether the round is one or five infusions), the first one or two leave me feeling incredibly fatigued. Usually that overall fatigue can last anywhere from two to about five days or so. As I get more infusions in that round, it gets easier (I assume because it is starting to work). It generally takes about three to four weeks before I really start to notice more energy though. Also, with the ferrlecit, I have been getting the infusions and then going back for testing about three months later. Not sure what my levels get up to but I know they are good because I have energy again. I've only been getting one infusion rather than two and it seems to take about three months when I start feeling really tired again and need another infusion. I hope you feel better soon!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Getting Serious About My Iron Deficiency Anemia - It's Hysterectomy Time!

WARNING: May be too graphic a post for some

I was diagnosed with Iron Deficiency Anemia more than thirteen years ago and have been treated with iron infusions for more than five years.  Although a hysterectomy has been suggested a few times over the years, I never took it seriously.

I am now.

So what has changed?

I am not 100% certain my anemia is caused by my cycle.  We've stopped my periods with the use of birth control pills.  I still needed infusions.  I've lessened the flow radically with Lysteda.  Still needed infusions.  Had to give up the pills because, after an extended time on them, I just felt down and lethargic (yes, even more lethargic than with my anemia...I felt the difference).  I quit the Lysteda because the migraines it caused became worse than the pain associated with my period.

But, my periods have become worse.  I did a crash diet a few years back and it seriously altered my cycles.  They were never great to begin with but they've become absolutely unb…

Precautions Recommended for IV Iron

As I draw near to getting another infusion, I am looking up the different types of iron.  I seem to be having a better time of it with the Ferrlecit so I will stick with it as long as my hematologist is willing to give it to me.

I found this article today:

New Precautions Recommended for IV Iron Supplements

Although nearly two years old, I still found it interesting.  Dextran was the worst iron I've had.  They started with Dextran they said because it is cheapest.  However, it also seems to have the more risk for serious reaction.  Indeed, I had a horrible experience with it during my second or third round of infusions.  That seems to be the only iron of which they require a test dose. 

I think, all in all, this is a good article to read.  I don't think it should panic anybody but it is good to remember that severe allergic reactions don't always happen during the first or second time getting infusions.  You don't want to take your infusion for granted and you want to …