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Anemia Test


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Overview

Anemia is a condition in which the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood is reduced. It may occur if there are too few red blood cells or abnormal red blood cells or if the hemoglobin is low or abnormal. It is characterized by pallor and fatigue.

Many medical conditions cause anemia. Common causes of anemia are:

  • Acute or chronic blood loss / GI bleeding
  • Increased hemolysis e.g. defective hemoglobin, immune disorder and enzyme deficiency
  • Diet deficiency e.g. vitamin B12, iron deficiency, folic acid
  • Bone marrow suppression e.g. due to exposure to radiation or chemicals which interferes with the RBC production in bone marrow.
  • Iron deficiency anemia – most common form of anemia worldwide. Caused due to inadequate amounts of iron in the body, necessary to make hemoglobin
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency anemia – also known as pernicious anemia. Caused due to either deficiency of vitamin B12 or body’s inability to absorb vitamin B12 from intestines
  • Aplastic anemia – rare, life threatening form of anemia, which occurs due to complete failure of bone marrow, rendering the body unable to produce sufficient red blood cells

Symptoms of anemia may include the following:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Dysemia
  • Rapid Heart rate
  • Pale skin
  • Low blood pressure
  • Physical examination
  • Blood tests - CBC
  • Screening during pregnancy

Some types of anemia can be managed with a healthy, balanced diet rich in iron, vitamin B12, folate, and vitamin C, which helps the body to absorb iron

  • Iron is found in red meat, poultry, and some fish (such as salmon, tuna, and shrimp). Other iron-rich foods include beans, lentils, dark green leafy vegetables, dried fruit, nuts, soy, and iron-fortified cereals and breads
  • Folate is found in fortified cereals, meat, spinach, beans, citrus fruits and juices, cantaloupe, papaya, and bananas
  • Vitamin B12 is most plentiful in meat, fish, and dairy products, as well as fortified cereals
  • Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, melons and berries, bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale

Anemia

1. At what levels of hemoglobin are people considered anemic?+
ii. Are some types of anemia inherited?+
iii.What is iron deficiency anemia and can I correct it by changing my diet?+
iv.Why are adolescents prone to iron deficiency?+
 

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