The tolerance of volunteer patients to various ferrous salt preparations, administered orally in equivalent doses of elemental iron, has been compared. The palatability of ferrous sulphate tablets, BP, given before meals was not improved by administration after meals, by sustained release formulation, or by substituting other ferrous salts. Intolerance was related to the number of tablets rather than to the dose of iron in a course. The liquid iron preparation was the least acceptable.
Ferrous sulphate tablets, BP, given before meals, approximate most closely to the hypothetical ideal iron preparation for therapeutic oral administration.