Ferrous fumarate is the generic name for the preparation whichcontains iron, the mineral of essential importance for the creation of the redblood cells which are in charge of carrying the oxygen through the bloodstream. Many other body cells need this mineral in order to functionchemically. However, regardless of the fact that it is essential for theperfect functioning of every body, this mineral should not be taken unlessthere is a specific reason for that. As for the conditions when it should beused, they are usually related to the iron deficiency and anemia, which meansthat the count of the red blood cells is low. Also, it is recommended to use itin pregnancy, because in this period each female needs more iron for the baby.
All the side effects can be divided in several groups, and as forthe gastrointestinal ones, they are usually related to the dosage, and includeconstipation, diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, but they can be minimizedby the change of the dosage, or if ferrous fumarate is taken with food.However, if taken with food, this way the absorption of iron may be put at riskbecause certain foods such as eggs, milk etc. prevent the full absorption ofthis mineral, and the same applies to coffee and tea. On the other side, peoplewho use it should also pay attention to the fact that the absorption isincreased when this drug is taken with vitamin C.
As for the interaction with other medicines, it is possible thatmedicines such as antacids, levodopa, penicillamine, quinolone and tetracyclineantibiotics, will cause either increased or decreased absorption of iron. Thiscan be avoided if a person is ready to make a break of at least 2 hours betweenthese two medicines. People with hemochromatosis, hemosiderosis and hemolyticanemia, should consult with their GP before even considering the use of ferrousfumigate. If a person has a history of being allergic to a drug which issimilar to ferrous fumigate, or to any other drug which contains iron, thatperson should not use it again. Also, the doctor should be informed about it.
One more thing that a person should be aware of is related to thefact that black stool is a very usual and harmless effect when using ironsupplements. However, if a person notices blood in the stool, or if a personexperiences serious stomach pain, it is something that should not bedisregarded or considered as common and usual, but medical help should besought.