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Ferric Maltol: Bridging the Gap Between Science and Health Benefits
Published on: January 31, 2024

Navigating the World of Ferric Maltol: Insights into Uses, Benefits, and Sources

What is Ferric Maltol?

Ferric Maltol, a compound that has garnered significant attention in the medical community, represents a breakthrough in the treatment of iron deficiency and anemia.

Ferric maltol is an active pharmaceutical ingredient used primarily for the treatment of iron deficiency. It is a complex of ferric iron (Fe3+) and maltol, a naturally occurring organic compound. This combination enhances the body’s ability to absorb iron, which is crucial for various bodily functions, especially for the production of red blood cells.

This blog delves into the world of Ferric Maltol, exploring its uses, benefits, and sources. We, West Bengal Chemical Industries Limited (WBCIL), a frontrunner in the manufacturing of Ferric Maltol, are contributing significantly to healthcare advancements.

Significance of Ferric Maltol

Ferric Maltol has emerged as a pivotal component in the battle against iron deficiency, a condition affecting millions worldwide. Its role in anemia management is particularly noteworthy, offering a ray of hope for those suffering from this debilitating condition.


Ferric Maltol Bridging the Gap Between Science and Health Benefits

Treatment of Iron Deficiency

Iron deficiency, the most common nutritional deficiency globally, can lead to severe health issues if left untreated. Ferric Maltol offers an effective solution, ensuring adequate iron levels in the body and mitigating the risks associated with iron deficiency.

Role in Anaemia Management

Anemia, often a consequence of iron deficiency, can severely impact quality of life. Ferric Maltol plays a crucial role in anemia management by providing a reliable source of iron, essential for the production of healthy red blood cells.

Therapeutic Applications of Ferric Maltol

Here are 10 key therapeutic applications:

  1. Treatment of Iron-Deficiency Anemia: Ferric maltol is primarily used to treat iron-deficiency anemia, a common condition where the blood lacks adequate healthy red blood cells due to insufficient iron.
  2. Management of Anemia in Chronic Diseases: It’s beneficial in managing anemia associated with chronic diseases like chronic kidney disease, where iron absorption can be impaired.
  3. Support in Pregnancy: Pregnant women, who have increased iron requirements, can benefit from ferric maltol, especially if they are intolerant to other forms of iron supplements.
  4. Enhancing Iron Absorption in Gastrointestinal Disorders: Patients with gastrointestinal disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which affect iron absorption, can benefit from the high bioavailability of ferric maltol.
  5. Post-Surgical Recovery: It aids in replenishing iron stores in patients who have undergone surgery, particularly surgeries that involve significant blood loss.
  6. Menstrual Health: Women with heavy menstrual bleeding, a common cause of iron-deficiency anemia, can use ferric maltol to maintain healthy iron levels.
  7. Pediatric Iron Supplementation: In certain cases, it may be used in pediatric patients who need iron supplementation and cannot tolerate other forms of iron.
  8. Supporting Athletic Performance: Athletes, especially female athletes, who are at risk of iron deficiency due to intense physical activity, can use ferric maltol to maintain optimal iron levels.
  9. Management of Fatigue: Since iron deficiency can cause fatigue, supplementing with ferric maltol can help improve energy levels and overall well-being.
  10. Enhancing Cognitive Function: Adequate iron levels are essential for cognitive health. Ferric maltol can help improve cognitive function in individuals with iron-deficiency anemia.

Therapeutic Applications of Ferric Maltol

Iron Deficiency Treatment: Ferric maltol is primarily used to treat iron deficiency, particularly in patients who cannot tolerate traditional iron supplements.

Gastrointestinal Tolerability: It offers better gastrointestinal tolerability compared to other iron supplements, reducing the risk of constipation, nausea, and abdominal pain.

Chronic Kidney Disease: Patients with chronic kidney disease, who often suffer from iron deficiency anemia, can benefit from ferric maltol due to its effectiveness and lower gastrointestinal side effects.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease: It’s particularly useful in treating iron deficiency anemia in patients with inflammatory bowel disease, as it is less likely to exacerbate gastrointestinal symptoms.

Non-Invasive Administration: Ferric maltol is administered orally, making it a non-invasive and convenient option for patients.

Rapid Hemoglobin Normalization: Studies have shown that ferric maltol can lead to a rapid normalization of hemoglobin levels in patients with iron deficiency anemia.

Improved Quality of Life: By effectively addressing iron deficiency, ferric maltol can significantly improve the quality of life for patients, including increased energy levels and reduced fatigue.

Heart Health: It helps in maintaining optimal iron levels, which is crucial for heart health, especially in patients with chronic heart conditions.

Pregnancy and Lactation: Ferric maltol can be used during pregnancy and lactation, offering a safer alternative for iron supplementation in these sensitive periods.

Minimal Drug Interactions: Ferric maltol has minimal interactions with other medications, making it a safer choice for patients on multiple therapies.

What are the sources of Ferric Maltol?

Ferric maltol, a compound formed by the chelation of ferric iron with maltol, is typically synthesized in a laboratory setting rather than being found in natural sources. Maltol itself, however, is a naturally occurring organic compound that can be found in various types of foods. Ferric maltol is used as an iron supplement, particularly for individuals with iron deficiency anemia.

Ferric Maltol Bridging the Gap Between Science and Health Benefits

Here’s a table outlining the natural sources of maltol, which is a component of ferric maltol:

Food Source Description
Baked Goods Found in baked goods, where it contributes to the flavor and aroma.
Roasted Coffee Present in roasted coffee, adding to its characteristic flavor.
Caramel A component of caramel, contributing to its sweet, buttery taste.
Cocoa Can be found in cocoa, enhancing its rich flavor.
Barley Naturally present in barley, especially when it is malted.
Chicory Chicory contains maltol, which adds to its slightly woody and nutty flavor profile.
Larch Bark Extracted from larch bark and is used in flavorings and fragrances.
Pine Needles Certain types of pine needles contain maltol, contributing to their unique scent and flavor.

Pharmaceutical formulations of ferric maltol are designed to effectively deliver iron to individuals with iron deficiency.

Here are key aspects of these formulations:

Oral Capsules/Tablets: The most common formulation of ferric maltol is in the form of oral capsules or tablets. This allows for easy ingestion and is suitable for outpatient treatment.

Liquid Suspension: For those who have difficulty swallowing pills, a liquid suspension form of ferric maltol may be available. This is particularly useful for children and elderly patients.

Controlled Release Formulation: Some formulations are designed to release iron slowly over time. This controlled release can help in reducing gastrointestinal side effects and improving absorption.

Combination Therapies: Ferric maltol is sometimes combined with other vitamins and minerals, such as folic acid or vitamin C, to enhance iron absorption and address multiple nutritional deficiencies.

Dosage Variations: It comes in different dosages, allowing healthcare providers to tailor the treatment according to the severity of iron deficiency and individual patient needs.

Coating for Gastrointestinal Tolerance: Certain formulations include a special coating to prevent the iron from being released until it reaches the small intestine. This helps in reducing gastrointestinal irritation.

Bioavailability Enhancement: The formulation of ferric maltol is designed to enhance bioavailability, ensuring that more iron is absorbed and utilized by the body.

Stability and Shelf Life: Pharmaceutical formulations are developed to ensure stability and a long shelf life, maintaining the efficacy of the medication over time.

Taste Masking: For liquid formulations, taste masking is often employed to make the medication more palatable, especially important for pediatric patients.

Regulatory Compliance: All pharmaceutical formulations of ferric maltol are subject to rigorous testing and must comply with regulatory standards to ensure safety, efficacy, and quality.


Ferric Maltol stands out as a significant advancement in the treatment of iron deficiency and anemia. Its ability to improve iron absorption, reduce side effects, and enhance patient compliance makes it a valuable tool in healthcare.

As one of the top manufacturers of Ferric Maltol in India, West Bengal Chemical Industries Limited (WBCIL) is at the forefront of providing effective solutions for iron deficiency and anemia management. For those seeking a reliable and effective treatment, WBCIL’s Ferric Maltol formulations represent the pinnacle of innovation and care in this field.


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