With the 2nd Global Iron Deficiency Day as a backdrop, Vifor Pharma reaffirmed its commitment to supporting health education efforts by leading a series of initiatives to raise awareness of iron deficiency, a particularly common condition in the elderly and in patients with chronic diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around one-third of the world’s population is affected by iron deficiency, including patients with IBD, chronic kidney disease, and congestive heart failure. Iron deficiency can significantly impact a person’s quality of life and overall health.
Vifor Pharma is supporting a series of activities to highlight the importance of recognizing and treating iron deficiency. These initiatives include:
- A new website (IronDeficiency.com) providing patients, caretakers and healthcare professionals with a robust source of resources and information about the causes, effects, and symptoms of iron deficiency.
- A Symptom Browser app, bringing information about iron deficiency to any smartphone or tablet, with downloads available via Apple store or Google Play.
- Support for the European Iron Deficiency Survey, which involved more than 10,000 adults with confirmed iron deficiency across seven European Union states. The survey highlighted the considerable lack of knowledge of the symptoms associated with iron deficiency among people diagnosed with this deficiency, with a third of respondents not able to recognize the symptoms. Almost 50 percent of those surveyed, however, confirmed that the condition had a notable, negative impact on their careers.
The survey also found that one in every three people described their condition as severe or very severe at the time of diagnosis, and reported that a leading symptom — feeling tired or fatigued — was the main reason they scheduled a doctor’s appointment, followed by such symptoms as pale skin and a decreased ability to focus.
“Iron deficiency is very common but often overlooked, especially in people with chronic conditions. Iron deficiency is a health-related condition in which iron availability is insufficient to meet body needs and therefore its timely detection and treatment is important, because iron is essential to the functioning of multiple organs,” said Maria Cappellini, PhD, from the University of Milan, Italy, in a press release.
Global Iron Deficiency Day was recognized on Nov. 26.