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iron tablets making me feel awful

(19 Posts)
girlafraid Wed 08-Dec-10 14:20:23

I've been given iron tablets to take and today I want to stop as they are making feel so ill, they give me a really bad tummy and make me feel queasy all day

i "forgot" to take them for a couple of days and my stomach felt much better so i'm sure that's what it is. DH freaks if i don't take them but i don't think i can take another 8 weeks of this, i'm scared to leave the house!

iron levels are 9 which i don't think is scarily low? has anoyone stopped taking them and been OK?

thatsabloodybigtree Wed 08-Dec-10 14:30:24

I can only speak for myself here, and wouldn't want to influence your decision but as mine were 10 every time I had my bloods done and never changed whether I was taking them or not, I did stop taking them. I "forgot" because they made me feel rubbish-especially the constipation but knew that I'd feel tired otherwise...when I began to feel tired, I would take them again and put up with the other side effects! I stopped taking them completely at 38 weeks because didn't want to be constipated before/during/after birth.

magichomes Wed 08-Dec-10 14:32:10

Get yourself some Spa-tone from Boots. You drink a sachet in orange juice. Very expensive alternative (£8 for 28 sachets) for tablets, but SO much better. I'm anaemic rather than pregnant, but I swear by them.

nancydrewrockinaroundxmastree Wed 08-Dec-10 14:32:21

9 is low.

Mine were 9 a couple of weeks ago and I was tired, lethargic and short of breath. It is very unlikely to cause you any real problems now (it is more that you will feel crap) however if you lose blood during labour your lack of iron could make you very ill indeed.

Incidentally the hospitals where I gave birth to my first two children wont discharge you post childbirth with iron levels of less than 10, and you wont get "approval" for a home birth.

I would carry on taking them or cut the dose by half and use floradix and an iron rich diet to supplement your levels. It is in your interests to have good levels during a post labour (this comes from someone who was anaemic and haemoraged during labour, levels dropped to 6 and I needed a transfusion - you do not want to feel that bad when you should be celebrating your new arrival)

hannahsaunt Wed 08-Dec-10 14:34:59

You will have been given (I think) ferriten and you can ask to be switched to ferrous sulphate if the first type is making you feel ill. I did this when pg last year with v low iron and felt much better very quickly.

I may have the names wrong but essentially there are two types of iron tablet and you are given the cheaper one in the first instance and if you can't tolerate it (I threw up with it) then you can switch to the (bit more expensive) other one.

lucy101 Wed 08-Dec-10 14:36:53

Another vote for spatone (and usually on 3 for 2 at Boots). I take two sachets with juice and not less than an hour before and after meals and drinks like tea and anything containing dairy (both this inhibit absorbtion).

I felt so dreadful on the iron tablets too that I gave up after 2 days.

Kitty81 Wed 08-Dec-10 14:39:40

You could try a lower dose if you supplement with diet, but I'd say check with gp or midwife first. Animal sources of iron are best; meat, really, and you absorb it better with vitamin c, and won't absorb it if you consume it with calcium or tannins, so have salad and oj with your steak and no milk or tea/coffee for an hour before and after. Might help?

AllSheepareWhite Wed 08-Dec-10 14:42:25

Try Feroglobin (husband is anaemic and takes this as iron tablets upset his stomach), Floradix is also good, but as made of natural ingredients needs to be kept in fridge as will start to ferment otherwise. I ate half a bag of spinach a day when pregnant, mainly because I craved it, but also because of iron and bonus it helps keep you regular.

3littlefrogs Wed 08-Dec-10 14:43:09

I am allergic to iron, my consultant told me not to take it because it made me so ill. My haemaglobin was 8.5, and I felt dreadful. However, by eating lots of red meat and other iron rich foods, taking vitamin c and avoiding tea and coffee, I manged to get my Hb up to 10.5 by the time I delivered. Still not great, but a hell of a lot better than previously.

lostinwales Wed 08-Dec-10 14:52:54

A third vote for spatone

I become very anaemic when pregnant and this saved me on DS3. If you get it on a 3 for 2 offer in boots it will see you through to the other side(!) I took it with an effervescent vitamin C tablet to cover the taste and increase absorbtion. I reacted very badly to the iron tablets, and ended up more anaemic after taking them. It is very important to get your iron levels up in time for the birth so don't stop taking an iron supplement of some sort.

SuiGeneris Wed 08-Dec-10 15:04:57

Try taking them at night on a full stomach and, if that is not enough, ask to be switched to a gastro-protected version, which means the iron is "wrapped" until it leaves the stomach and so cannot make you feel ill.
Don't give up: being anaemic after the birth will make you feel dreadful and stop you enjoying the first few days- and sometimes can delay the milk and make the baby blues much more intense (it did for me).

You really want to have as good levels as you can: I had 13.5 but complications in the last thirty minutes of the birth meant I lost more than a litre of blood and ended up with 7 and needing a transfusion. Even after the transfusion felt utterly rubbish and needed A LOT of help until level were back up to 11-12. It's really important- do persevere and good luck!

giraffeshatewinter Wed 08-Dec-10 15:50:56

my iron levels are 10 and I'm on floradix. Find out at blood test next week if floradix is boosting things a bit. Recommend you try it - the tablets sound horrid.

thelennox Wed 08-Dec-10 15:56:32

Please don't stop taking them - even with iron tablets I had horrendously low blood levels and ended up in and out of hospital having unpleasant iron infusions intravenously and also had threat of blood transfusion hanging over me before birth. They can re-jig things so that the iron you take is different and doesn't affect you, but honest its not pleasant if your iron levels fall much further.

Adair Wed 08-Dec-10 15:59:30

yes, yes. I was on ferrous sulphate. HIDEOUS.
Spoke to mw who gave me Ferrograd instead. Much better (and free).

nicm Wed 08-Dec-10 16:20:21

get spatone! i managed to get it on perscription from the doctor. just take it with orange juice and hasn't made me constipated!

girlafraid Wed 08-Dec-10 16:46:57

thank you all - i'm going to go back to GP

I'm having a c section so guess i will lose blood during that and don't want to feel really ill afterwards, hopefully he can prescribe the spatone!

CharlotteBronteSaurus Wed 08-Dec-10 16:51:06

i cannot tolerate ferrous sulphate. gp prescribed ferrous fumerate instead, which was definitely tolerable, although still not without side effects. i have found spatone is ok to keep me from becoming anaemic usually, but in pregnancy my iron levela fell to 9.0 despite the spatone, so i needed the ferrous fumerate to get thing bck on track.

TettyLouBar Thu 09-Dec-10 08:40:13

Ferrous sulphate with DD1 made me constipated, ill and I hated taking them.
Discovered I was once again iron deficient with PG2 (now 34/40) and was recommended Spatone.
Amazon did a promotion on the 28 sachet boxes at about £4.20 each instead of £6.95 last week so I bought enough to see me through to a month after baby born. (free delivery too) Last time my ferritin levels were very low and I had to take ferrous sulphate for months after DD1 was born.
Anyway spatone is brilliant! cant believe I have never tried it before.
Hope this helps smile

Lollllyyy Fri 23-Sep-16 18:26:15

Hi
Just curious but where did you give birth as my iron level was 6.5 when in hospital they did want to give me a blood transfusion finally got discharged out of hospital as had been there a week, came home was always tired no energy, very lethargic, no appetite, just nothing to me was wierd, done way to much when I got home which was my mistake ran out of my iron tabs the hospital sent me home with so went to docs he said my Irion was way to low, give me 6 months of tabs but first day taking them all I want to do is sleep, pains In tummy and feeling very sick is this normal I can't afford to be ill with a month old baby I'm finding today very hard I won't give up but don't get why Iv no energy and feeling sick sad thanks
Lauren

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