Skip to main content
padlock icon - secure page this page is secure

Evaluation of iron deficiency anaemia in tertiary hospital settings: room for improvement?

Buy Article:

$52.00 + tax (Refund Policy)


Background:  Iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) is a marker of occult blood loss from gastrointestinal (GI) lesions and requires thorough GI evaluation.

Aim:  This study aimed to determine frequency and findings of GI endoscopy in patients with IDA attending a tertiary hospital, and associations of endoscopy with patient and clinician‐related factors and results of faecal occult blood tests (FOBT).

Methods:  Retrospective audit of 621 subjects identified with definite and probable IDA (serum ferritin ≤15 ug/L and 16–50 µg/L respectively) between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 31 2008. Subjects were analysed as males >18 years and females ≥45 years of age with definite (group A, n= 180) or probable (group B, n= 353) IDA, and females <45 years of age with definite or probable IDA (group C, n= 88).

Results:  Endoscopy of any type was documented in 310 (50%) of patients with oesophagogastroduodenal endoscopy, and colonoscopy rates being significantly higher in group A patients (61% and 56% respectively) than in group B (39%, 37%) and group C (30%, 31%; P≤ 0.01 for all comparisons). Endoscopy rates ranged from 96% of patients seeing gastroenterologists to 31% of those seeing nephrologists. In patients undergoing colonoscopy, cancer and high‐risk adenomas were detected in 51 patients (20%), ranging from 27/100 (27%) of group A, 23/130 (18%) of group B and 1/27 (4%) of group C. Lesion prevalence was similar (19–24%) regardless of whether FOBT yielded positive or negative results or had not been performed.

Conclusions:  Almost one in two patients with IDA were not documented as undergoing GI endoscopy. More intense guideline promulgation, improved endoscopy access and ongoing practice audits are required to improve endoscopy rates.
No References
No Citations
No Supplementary Data
No Article Media
No Metrics

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Internal Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology, Princess Alexandra Hospital 2: Queensland Clinical Trials and Biostatistics Centre, School of Population Health, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Publication date: June 1, 2012

  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more