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The iron deficiency is the more frequent hematological dysfunction around the world and it affects approximately to 2000 million people, of which 77 millions live in Latin America and the Caribbean. The iron deficiency has a spectrum that goes from the reduction and exhaustion of the iron reservations, until the reduction of the red cells and of the hemoglobin concentration. In consequence, there are iron deficiencies without anemia. The children are one of the most vulnerable groups to this deficiency, due to the quick period of cerebral growth, especially during the first two years of life. Iron is one of the main substrates that support and allow the development and the metabolic activity of multiple processes at brain, among which is the myelination process. An insufficient iron readiness in a period of high incorporation of this in the cerebral fabric, coinciding with the myelinization period of the nervous fabric, can provide a physiologic base of explanation to the observed behavioral effects when there are deficiencies of the micronutrient. In the same way, the iron deficiency affects the regulation and the neurotransmitters conduction of serotonin, dopamine and GABA. Alteration of the receivers and dopamine transporters, imply in the infants the affective answers and the operation cognitive, and those of the receiving GABA, the coordination of movement patterns and memory. The importance consists that when it happens a deficit of cerebral iron in early stages, those damages persist in the adulthood, beyond the recovery of the anemia during the first months of life. These cerebral alterations are reflected long term in a delay of the mental and physical development of the children that they have had anemia, and its consequence of minor r school acting, with high levels of repetition of grades and desertion of the primary school in economically poor communities. However, the results of the diverse investigations carried out in this field, don’t throw conclusive results about a causal relationship, and it is probable that the effects on the behavior and the development in the anemic children are increased by the presence of unfavorable environmental factors for a normal development. It is unlikely that result differences in the mental development and motor observed in anemic children obey a factor of unique risk, but rather they are consequences of associated factors combination. Of here the necessity arises of uniting efforts, to improve the quality of the educational experience carrying out investments in health, education and environmental reparation that will allow a better well-being of the students and its families.

Gilda G. Stanco, Universidad Metropolitana de Caracas

Profesora Adscrita, Escuela de Educación, Universidad Metropolitana de Caracas, Caracas, Venezuela.
Stanco, G. G. (2007). Intellectual operation and scholastic yield in children with anemia and iron deficiency. Colombia Medica, 38(1 Supl 1), 24–33. Supl 1.484


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