This prospective randomized placebo-controlled study conducted in 159 patients reported that perioperative oral or intravenous iron administration did not reduce postoperative blood transfusion requirements in cardiac surgery patients. The results should be interpreted with caution, taking into account two major limitations. First, as the authors acknowledge, the study did not have the statistical power to demonstrate a possible effect of iron supplementation on postoperative hemoglobin levels. Second, iron was administered to all patients and not only to those presenting with an absolute or functional iron deficiency.
– Philippe Van der Linden