Role of iron in breath holding spells and effect of iron therapy in children
Keywords:Breath holding spells, Children and iron deficiency, Anemia and serum ferritin
Background: Breath holding spells (BHS) are paroxysmal events resulting from painful stimulus or emotional event resulting in forceful crying, occur in children’s aged between 6 months to 6 years. To assess the role of iron in breath holding spells (BHS) and to assess the efficiency of iron therapy in reducing frequency of BHS.
Methods: This was a prospective, interventional study conducted at GMC baramulla. A total of 70 patients between the ages of 6 months and 5 years with breath holding spells with iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia were studied. After giving them iron therapy for 6 and 12 weeks, they were assessed for the improvement in their anemia and its impact on the frequency of breath holding spells.
Results: Seventy children with breath holding spells were studied prospectively. Forty (57.15%) cases were males and 30 (42.85%) females. There was a statistically significant rise in the hemoglobin level, serum ferritin, serum iron with 6 and12 weeks of iron therapy (p<0.001). This rise in the hemoglobin level serum ferritin and serum iron was associated with a statistically significant fall in the frequency of breath holding spells with 6 and 12 weeks of iron therapy (p<0.001).
Conclusions: iron supplement is effective in reducing the frequency of breath holding spells and thus iron has role in BHS.
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