Anemia is a health concern in which the body experiences weakness and tiredness. It is due to the lack of adequate red healthy blood cells in the body. There are numerous causes of Anemia and its various types. It can be long term or short term and the problem can range from mild to severe. Some people even become anemic due to the onset of any significant ailment.
Types of anemia
There are several types of Anemia that affects people. They are given below:
● Aplastic Anemia
● Iron deficiency anemia
● Sickle cell anemia
● Vitamin deficiency anemia
What are the Symptoms of Anemia?
There are different signs and symptoms based on the types of Anemia. The symptom of mild Anemia is almost untraceable, but the symptoms become prominent when the anemia becomes worse. Some common symptoms are:
● Pale or yellowish skin
● Irregular heartbeats
● Shortness of breath
● Dizziness or lightheadedness
● Chest pain
● Cold hands and feet
When to See a Doctor?
If you are getting tired quickly or have fatigue without any exertion, these might be symptoms of Anemia. Also, if your blood test displays low hemoglobin; it is advisable to see a doctor.
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What are the Causes of Anemia?
The causes of anemia are various. The primary reason is low red blood cells in the body. Some of the reasons for the low count of red blood cells are:
● The situation when the body generates low red blood cells.
● The case of excessive bleeding leads to the loss of red blood cells more rapidly than their regeneration.
● The condition in which your body destroys red blood cells.
Numerous types of anemia and their causes
● Iron deficiency anemia- This is the most common form of Anemia. The cause is the shortage of iron in your body. The bone marrow requires iron for making hemoglobin, and in its absence, the body is unable to produce enough hemoglobin for the red blood cells. Anemia is also seen in pregnant women when they do not take iron supplements.
● Anemia due to blood loss include heavy bleeding during menstruation, ulcer, cancer, or frequent use of strong painkillers like aspirin which lead to inflammation of the stomach lining resulting in blood loss.
● Vitamin deficiency anemia-Your body requires an adequate amount of Vitamin B-12 in the diet for producing red blood cells. Its deficiency leads to low production of RBCs. The body of some people does not absorb vitamin B-12, which creates its deficit.
● In chronic diseases like cancer, HIV/AIDS, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney disease, Crohn’s disease, and others that cause inflammation, anemia can occur. They may hinder in red blood cell production.
● Anemia associated with bone marrow disease- If you are suffering from leukemia and myelofibrosis, then it impacts the blood production ability in the bone marrow. It causes Anemia of mild to a life-threatening stage. Aplastic anemia is a dangerous and rare form of Anemia as in this condition, your bone marrow does not produce enough red blood cells. Some primary causes are infections, certain medicines, autoimmune diseases, and toxic chemical exposure.
● Hemolytic anemias-It is a problem when the red blood cells in the body are destroyed faster than their regeneration. It can be a genetic issue, and blood diseases can also trigger this .
● Sickle cell anemia-You are likely to inherit this form of Anemia. It involves distortion of the hemoglobin, which forces the red blood cells to become of sickle shape. It causes premature death of the cells leading to an immense shortage of red blood cells.
How is Anemia Diagnosed?
For the diagnosis of numerous types of Anemia, your doctor may examine your family history, do a physical examination, and advise the following tests:
● Complete blood count (CBC)- Your blood sample is taken to examine the level of red blood cells , packed cell volume [hematocrit] and hemoglobin in your blood. The average hematocrit value for the men is between 40% and 52% and for the women is 35% and 47%.
● A test to verify the size and shape of your red blood cells- These tests include checking for unusual size, shape, and color of blood cells .
What is the Treatment for Anemia?
There are various treatments available for Anemia, depending on the cause. Some are given below:
● Iron deficiency anemia- This involves taking iron and Vit c supplements and changes in your diet to raise iron levels .
● In the case of loss of blood, other than from menstruation, then it is crucial to stop the bleeding by locating the source of blood loss. The process may require surgery.
● Vitamin deficiency anemia- The treatment for this Anemia is simple. You need to consume food rich in Vit B12 and folic acid or have supplements . In the case of problems in the digestive system in absorbing vitamin B-12 from the food, you may take vitamin B-12 shots.
● Anemia of chronic disease- The Anemia does not have any specific treatment . Doctors try to treat the underlying disease. If the condition becomes severe, blood transfusion or injections of a synthetic hormone produced by kidneys (erythropoietin) is used to increase red blood cell production and assist in removing fatigue.
● Aplastic Anemia- The cure for this Anemia involves the process of blood transfusions to produce an adequate amount of red blood cells. There are also chances of a bone marrow transplant if your bone marrow is unable to produce healthy red blood cells.
● Anemia linked with bone marrow disease-There are numerous ways of treating this kind of Anemia like medication, chemotherapy, or bone marrow transplantation.
● Hemolytic Anemia- For the treatment of hemolytic Anemia, you need to avoid suspect medications, treatment of the infections that may cause it and evaluate any medications you may be taking , that may affect your immune system..
● Sickle cell anemia-The treatment for sickle cell anemia includes oxygen, pain relievers, and oral as well as intravenous fluids. It reduces pain and prevents further complications. Doctors recommend blood transfusions, folic acid supplements, and antibiotics for better results. A cancer treating drug named hydroxyurea is also in use for the treatment of sickle cell anemiaConclusion
Anemia is a prevalent health issue in people, and proper treatment can cure it. The treatment for this health condition includes the use of supplements, or even undergoing specific medical procedures as per the severity of the health condition of the patient. People can also prevent the occurrence of certain types of Anemia by eating a balanced and nutritious diet.