Iron Deficiency Is Associated with Adverse Outcomes in Pediatric Heart Failure

Kriti Puri, Jack F Price, Joseph A Spinner, Jacquelyn M Powers, Susan W Denfield, Antonio G Cabrera, Hari P Tunuguntla, William J Dreyer, Mona D Shah
Journal of Pediatrics 2019 October 11

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of iron deficiency and its association with outcomes in children with heart failure.

STUDY DESIGN: A single-center retrospective cohort study of patients with heart failure aged 1-21 years from July 2012 to June 2017 with available serum iron studies was performed. Subjects were analyzed in 2 groups: biventricular systolic heart failure (BiV) and single-ventricle congenital heart disease with systolic heart failure (SV). Iron deficiency was defined as ≥2 of the following: serum iron <50 μg/dL, serum ferritin <20 ng/mL, transferrin >300 ng/mL, or transferrin saturation <15%. The primary outcome was a composite adverse event (CAE) of ventricular assist device implantation, heart transplantation, or death, at 3 and 6 months from time of iron studies.

RESULTS: Of the 107 subjects (77 BiV, 30 SV) included in the study, 56% were iron deficient. Demographics, etiology of heart failure, and chronicity of heart failure symptoms were not associated with iron deficiency. On multivariable analysis, in group BiV, iron deficiency was associated with CAE at 3 months (79% iron deficiency in CAE group vs 37% iron deficiency in non-CAE, P = .001, OR 7, 95% CI 2-21) and 6 months (76% iron deficiency in CAE vs 35% iron deficiency in non-CAE, P = .002, OR 7, 95% CI 2-24). In group SV, iron deficiency was associated with CAE at 6 months (79% iron deficiency in CAE vs 29% iron deficiency in non-CAE, P = .014, OR 8, 95% CI 2-32).

CONCLUSIONS: Iron deficiency was present in 56% of the pediatric patients with heart failure who were evaluated with iron studies. Iron deficiency was associated with greater risk of ventricular assist device implantation, heart transplantation, or death.

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