July 1974

Iron Deficiency in Families of Iron-Deficient Inner-City School Children

Author Affiliations

From the Follow-Through Medical Program of St. Christopher's Hospital for Children; and the Department of Pediatrics, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

Am J Dis Child. 1974;128(1):18-20. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1974.02110260020004

Sixty-eight (5.5%) of 1,210 inner-city school children ranging in age from 5 to 8 years were found to have microcythemia (mean corpuscular volume less than 77 cu μ) unassociated with hemoglobinopathy, β thalassemia trait, lead intoxication, chronic infection, or chronic blood loss. Such microcythemia was found to be associated with cultural characteristics of chronic poverty, and a presumptive diagnosis of iron deficiency was made. Hematologic evaluation of inner-city families showed that when the school age child was iron deficient it was likely that the mother and siblings were also iron deficient.