Many clinicians have the impression that the response to iron therapy of patients with hypochromic anemia is enhanced if the vitamin B complex is administered concomitantly. Relatively expensive combinations of these two therapeutic agents have been prepared by pharmaceutical houses and are being extensively used. The reasoning behind this dual therapy accepts the recent impression that subclinical or subcritical deficiencies of the B complex are relatively common in the United States1 and postulates that the circumstances which bring about iron deficiency may lead also to suboptimal intake of vitamins. It is assumed, furthermore, that vitamin deficiency may result either in poor absorption of iron from the intestinal tract or in its defective utilization for hemoglobin synthesis.
These ideas about the interrelationship of iron metabolism and the vitamin B complex germinate from three separate types of scientific evidence. In the first place, many investigators have frequently observed hypochromic anemias in
MOORE CV, MINNICH V, VILTER RW, SPIES TD. HYPOCHROMIC ANEMIA IN PATIENTS WITH DEFICIENCY OF THE VITAMIN B COMPLEX: RESPONSE TO IRON THERAPY WITH AND WITHOUT YEAST. JAMA. 1943;121(4):245–250. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840040021006
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