A precise, although technically complicated method is described for the estimation of iron absorption. A steel chamber is used to measure the total radioactivity of the patients. A dose of 59Fe is administered orally and the retention of radioactivity is measured on the 14th day, this amount being equivalent to the amount absorbed. In our male group, the mean absorption of inorganic iron was 22.5 ± 8%, and in females it was 43.3 ± 11%. In 10 patients with iron deficiency anemia, the mean was 92.2 ± 6%, in 10 with gastric achylia it was 4.6 ± 4%, and in 12 chronic alcoholics a value of 13.9 ± 7% was found.

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