Myelodysplastic syndromes are characterized by ineffective hematopoiesis resulting in peripheral cytopenias. The majority of patients is dependent on regular transfusions of packed red blood cells leading to a secondary iron overload which might result in organ damage. Therefore, sufficient iron chelation therapy in selected patients is mandatory. Deferasirox (DFX) is an orally administered iron chelator which has been highly efficient in the treatment of secondary iron overload. Most frequent side effects of DFX are gastrointestinal disturbances, which leads in some patients to low adherence to the therapy. An expert panel met in Lisbon in July 2010 to develop recommendations on prevention and management of GI disturbances based on existing data and personal experiences.