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In Brief: Iron supplementation and learning

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Iron supplementation and learning: Study of 78 non-anemic, iron deficient teenage girls randomized to SmithKline Beecham's Feosol OTC ferrous sulphate tablets or placebo finds that iron supplementation may improve verbal learning and memory but not attention span, Ann Bruner, MD, et al., Johns Hopkins, report in the Oct. 12 issue of The Lancet. In an accompanying commentary, Deborah Ashby, University of Liverpool, points out that the study found a difference in only one of the four endpoints studied and that the trial was "small" and "explanatory" and "should not be mistaken for a pragmatic trial designed to confirm whether any potential benefit" of iron supplementation in iron-deficient populations "could be realized in practice"...

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