Risk of iron overload and 'hemochromatosis allele(s)' in patients on maintenance hemodialysis

Am J Nephrol. 1987;7(1):28-32. doi: 10.1159/000167425.


In the present study, we have evaluated the relationship between serum ferritin (SF) levels, 'hemochromatosis allele(s)', blood transfusions and iron parenteral administration in 69 hemodialysis patients. We demonstrated significantly higher SF levels in patients with hemochromatosis allele(s) (HA+) than in patients without hemochromatosis alleles (HA-). In addition, HA+ patients who had received blood transfusions up to 15 months prior to the study had SF levels even higher than those without blood transfusions. On the other hand, HA- patients had normal levels of SF, independent of blood transfusions. After intravenous administration of 1 g iron saccharate, SF levels were significantly higher only in HA+ transfused patients. In conclusion, our study demonstrated that HA+ patients are at a higher risk of iron overload and therefore the use of transfusional and/or parenteral iron should be strictly limited.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Anemia / drug therapy
  • Child
  • Female
  • Ferric Compounds / adverse effects
  • Ferric Compounds / therapeutic use
  • Ferric Oxide, Saccharated
  • Ferritins / blood
  • Glucaric Acid
  • Hemochromatosis / etiology
  • Hemochromatosis / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Renal Dialysis*
  • Risk
  • Transfusion Reaction
  • Uremia / therapy


  • Ferric Compounds
  • Ferritins
  • Ferric Oxide, Saccharated
  • Glucaric Acid