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Iron May Benefit Chronic Cough

Posted Nov 29 2012 8:00am

A recent study shows that iron deficiency may cause some cases of chronic cough in women.

Reported in the International Journal of Clinical Practice, the research claims that patients presenting to an outpatient respiratory clinic with unexplained chronic cough, and later found to be iron deficient,  showed a “dramatic” improvement in their symptoms after taking iron supplements .

Italian researchers say that, although this was only a small study , the 22 women involved in the study had not responded to standard treatment, but following  two months of iron treatment, a histamine challenge concentration had to be increased fourfold to produce the same number of coughs. A plausible mechanism for iron deficiency causing chronic cough could be impairment of the defense mechanisms of the airway mucosa, they suggested. This fitted with the well-known link between iron deficiency and oral mucosa atrophy.

See your naturopathic physician or doctor before taking iron supplements. Good sources of iron include oysters, clams, cereals, sunflower seeds, and dried fruit such as apricots and prunes.

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