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December 30, 1933


JAMA. 1933;101(27):2123-2124. doi:10.1001/jama.1933.02740520033014

The question of the type of compound to be preferred for use in therapy with iron has been the subject of debate for many, many years. Empirically, the inorganic salts of the element found widespread use long before the end of the last century. During that period, distinctions began to be made between so-called organic and inorganic combinations of iron. The term "masked iron" was sometimes given preference over the expression "organic iron." From the latter point of view the acetate and albuminate of iron, for example, were both classified with inorganic iron because they are capable of dissociation and the iron therein is precipitated by ammonium sulphide. Many sources of "food iron," that is, iron as it is present in common food materials such as the yolk of egg, appeared to belong to the category of "masked iron." At one period it was widely believed that "food iron" and

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