JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

Ferric carboxymaltose: a review of its use in iron deficiency

Gillian M Keating
Drugs 2015, 75 (1): 101-27
25428711
Ferric carboxymaltose (Ferinject(®), Injectafer(®)) is an intravenous iron preparation approved in numerous countries for the treatment of iron deficiency. A single high dose of ferric carboxymaltose (up to 750 mg of iron in the US and 1,000 mg of iron in the EU) can be infused in a short time frame (15 min). Consequently, fewer doses of ferric carboxymaltose may be needed to replenish iron stores compared with some other intravenous iron preparations (e.g. iron sucrose). Ferric carboxymaltose improved self-reported patient global assessment, New York Heart Association functional class and exercise capacity in patients with chronic heart failure and iron deficiency in two randomized, placebo-controlled trials (FAIR-HF and CONFIRM-HF). In other randomized controlled trials, ferric carboxymaltose replenished iron stores and corrected anaemia in various populations with iron-deficiency anaemia, including patients with chronic kidney disease, inflammatory bowel disease or heavy uterine bleeding, postpartum iron-deficiency anaemia and perioperative anaemia. Intravenous ferric carboxymaltose was generally well tolerated, with a low risk of hypersensitivity reactions. It was generally better tolerated than oral ferrous sulfate, mainly reflecting a lower incidence of gastrointestinal adverse effects. The most common laboratory abnormality seen in ferric carboxymaltose recipients was transient, asymptomatic hypophosphataemia. The higher acquisition cost of ferric carboxymaltose appeared to be offset by lower costs for other items, with the potential for cost savings. In conclusion, ferric carboxymaltose is an important option for the treatment of iron deficiency.

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