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Your body needs plenty of iron to make red blood cells. Because of this, most people who take epoetin alfa (EPO) need extra iron. Iron can be given in pill form or by IV. Some people receive it both ways.
If you take iron pills, follow these tips:
Take iron pills as often as directed. Do not skip doses.
Take iron between meals if you use phosphate binders at mealtime. If taken together, the iron can get caught by the binder.
Eat high-fiber foods to help control constipation. Fresh fruits and vegetables that are low in potassium make good choices.
Ask your health care provider about using a stool softener if constipation becomes a frequent problem.
Talk with your health care provider if you begin to have stomach or intestinal upset.