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Lancet iron study

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

"Current guidelines for universal supplementation with iron and folic acid should be revised" because "routine supplementation with iron and folic acid in preschool children in a population with high rates of malaria can result in an increased risk of severe illness and death," according to a study published in The Lancet Jan. 14. Sunil Sazawaal, Johns Hopkins University, et al., conducted an 18-month randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial in Pemba, Zanzibar on children aged one month to 4 years. "Midway through the trial, the iron and folic acid-containing groups had to be stopped because they were associated with higher rates of adverse events (hospital admissions and deaths) than the zinc and placebo groups," the authors state. International guidelines currently recommend supplementation in children younger than two-years-old who live in areas with a high prevalence of anemia, Sazawaal et al. note...

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