Diagnostic Yield of Upper Gastrointestinal Endoscopy in the Evaluation of Iron Deficiency Anemia in Older Children and Adolescents

Gülen H., Kasırga E., YILDIRIM Ş., Kader Ş., Şahin G., Ayhan S.

PEDIATRIC HEMATOLOGY AND ONCOLOGY, vol.28, no.8, pp.694-701, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 28 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.3109/08880018.2011.572145
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.694-701
  • Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University Affiliated: No


Iron deficiency anemia (IDA) is frequent in childhood. Inadequate nutrition and gastrointestinal malabsorption are the frequent causes of IDA in children. But reduced iron absorption and insidious blood loss from the gastrointestinal tract has been identified as the most frequent causes of IDA in older children and adolescents. Therefore the authors evaluated the frequency and etiologies of the upper gastrointestinal system pathologies causing IDA in older pediatric population. Patients with known hematological or chronic diseases, heavy menstrual flow, and obvious blood loss were excluded from the study. Forty-four children between the ages of 9.5 and 17.5 years and diagnosed with IDA were enrolled. They underwent upper gastrointestinal endoscopy and biopsy from esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. Mean age and hemoglobin (Hb) levels of study group (32 boys, and 12 girls) were 14.6 +/- 2.0 years and 7.9 +/- 1.8 g/dL, respectively. Only 1 patient had a positive serology testing with anti-tissue transglutaminase and small bowel biopsy correlating with celiac disease. Endoscopy revealed abnormal findings in 25 (56.8%) patients (21 endoscopic antral gastritis, 2 active duodenal ulcers, and 2 duodenal polyps). Helicobacter pylori (HP) infection was identified by using antral histopathological evaluation in 19 of 44 children (43.2%). In 2 of duodenal samples, one patient had celiac disease, and the other one was diagnosed as giardiasis. In conclusion, there are different etiologies resulting in IDA in older children and adolescents. When older children and adolescents are found to have iron deficiency, HP infection and other gastrointestinal pathologies should be ruled out before iron deficiency treatment.