Last update Sept. 27, 2015

Iron Dextran

Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Hydroxide complex formed by iron dextran for parenteral administration.
In addition to its high molecular weight, other characteristics of iron metabolism in the body make unlikely that it would be excreted in a significant amount into breast milk.
It is a medication used for treatment of Neonatal Anemia in premature babies.
Iron is excreted in small amounts in human milk, usually being enough for covering the daily needs of infants due to its high bioavailability.

There is no correlation between mother's daily intake of iron and its concentration in breast milk.
Iron supplementation to the mother does not increase levels of iron in breast milk or infant plasma significantly. Excessive supplementation can reduce the zinc concentration in milk.

WHO List of Essential Medicines 2002: compatible with breastfeeding.


We do not have alternatives for Iron Dextran since it is relatively safe.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Iron Dextran in other languages or writings:


Iron Dextran belongs to this group or family:


Main tradenames from several countries containing Iron Dextran in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Oral Bioavail. 0 %
Molecular weight 165.000 daltons
Tmax 72 hours


  1. Sheikh M, Hantoushzadeh S, Shariat M, Farahani Z, Ebrahiminasab O. The efficacy of early iron supplementation on postpartum depression, a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Eur J Nutr. 2015 Abstract
  2. Ares Segura S, Arena Ansótegui J, Díaz-Gómez NM; en representación del Comité de Lactancia Materna de la Asociación Española de Pediatría. La importancia de la nutrición materna durante la lactancia, ¿necesitan las madres lactantes suplementos nutricionales? [The importance of maternal nutrition during breastfeeding: Do breastfeeding mothers need nutritional supplements?] An Pediatr (Barc). 2015 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  3. Mello-Neto J, Rondó PH, Oshiiwa M, Morgano MA, Zacari CZ, dos Santos ML. Iron supplementation in pregnancy and breastfeeding and iron, copper and zinc status of lactating women from a human milk bank. J Trop Pediatr. 2013 Abstract
  4. Yalçin SS, Baykan A, Yurdakök K, Yalçin S, Gücüş AI. The factors that affect milk-to-serum ratio for iron during early lactation. J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2009 Abstract
  5. Hannan MA, Faraji B, Tanguma J, Longoria N, Rodriguez RC. Maternal milk concentration of zinc, iron, selenium, and iodine and its relationship to dietary intakes. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2009 Abstract
  6. Breymann C, von Seefried B, Stahel M, Geisser P, Canclini C. Milk iron content in breast-feeding mothers after administration of intravenous iron sucrose complex. J Perinat Med. 2007 Abstract
  7. Baykan A, Yalçin SS, Yurdakök K. Does maternal iron supplementation during the lactation period affect iron status of exclusively breast-fed infants? Turk J Pediatr. 2006 Abstract
  8. Haidar J, Umeta M, Kogi-Makau W. Effect of iron supplementation on serum zinc status of lactating women in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. East Afr Med J. 2005 Abstract
  9. WHO / UNICEF. BREASTFEEDING AND MATERNAL MEDICATION Recommendations for Drugs in the Eleventh WHO Model List of Essential Drugs. Department of Child and Adolescent Health and Development (WHO/UNICEF) 2002 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  10. Ortega RM, López-Sobaler AM, Andrés P, Martínez RM, Quintas ME. [Supplementation with iron and folates during gestation: influence on the zinc status in the mother and on the zinc content in the maternal milk]. Med Clin (Barc). 1998 Abstract
  11. Doran L, Evers S. Energy and nutrient inadequacies in the diets of low-income women who breast-feed. J Am Diet Assoc. 1997 Abstract

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e-lactancia is a resource recommended by Confederación Nacional de Pediatría (CONAPEME) of Mexico

Would you like to recommend the use of e-lactancia? Write to us at corporate mail of APILAM