Anemia is the most common extraintestinal manifestation of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Although there are several causes of anemia in IBD, the two most frequent etiologies are iron deficiency anemia and anemia of chronic disease. Despite the high prevalence of anemia in IBD and its significant impact on patient´s quality of life, this complication is still underdiagnosed and undertreated by providers. Active screening for anemia, structured assessment, comprehensive management, and multidisciplinary collaboration are needed in IBD patients. The cornerstone of anemia management depends on the underlying etiology along with normalization of inflammatory activity. Although, oral iron is effective for the treatment of mild iron deficiency-related anemia, intravenous iron formulations have a good safety profile and can be used as first-line therapy in patients with active IBD, severe anemia and previous intolerance prior to oral iron. After proper treatment of anemia, careful monitoring is necessary to prevent its recurrence. Herein, we discuss the etiology, screening, diagnosis, therapy selection, and follow-up for anemia in IBD.
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