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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 43  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 212-216

Effect of enteral bovine lactoferrin on neonatal iron status

1 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt
2 Department of Clinical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Menat A.A Shaaban
lecturer in department of Clinical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University. Abbassia Square, PO box 11381, Cairo
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ejh.ejh_30_18

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Background All infants experience a decrease in hemoglobin (Hb) soon after birth, which results in varying degrees of anemia. Oral bovine lactoferrin (LF) supplementation, an iron-binding glycoprotein, is a promising therapy for iron-deficiency anemia. Objectives To evaluate the effect of enteral LF supplementation on the levels of Hb, hematocrit, and serum ferritin in infants admitted in the neonatal intensive care units. This was an interventional double-blind trial conducted on 52 neonates who were randomized into LF group (n=26) and placebo group (n=26). LF was administered at a dose of 100 mg/day once by enteral route starting from birth to 30th day of life. Complete blood count and serum ferritin were assessed in patients at 7th and 30th day of life. Results There were no significant differences between both the studied groups as regards serum ferritin, Hb, hematocrit, mean corpuscular volume, red cell distribution width, platelet count, and total leukocytic count on day 7. There were statistically significant higher serum ferritin, Hb, hematocrit, and mean corpuscular volume, and lower red cell distribution width and total leukocytic count in the LF group than the placebo group on day 30. The placebo group had significantly higher mortality than LF group (19.2% vs. zero; P=0.051). Conclusion Bovine LF is an effective and safe therapy to prevent anemia in neonates.

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