Thursday, July 3, 2014

Anemia, Cause and Prevention.

Are you tired and run down? There are many reasons or maybe you are anemic. We rush our co worker to the hospital because she suddenly fell unconscious. After the diagnosis we learned that he has an anemia.

I known if a person has an anemia he/she is a low blood, and its hereditary because my mother and sister have it, also the daughter of my sister, one cure that my mother always told to my sister is to eat ampalaya, a green sour taste vegetable, she said it will help to increase your blood, other say, eat half cooked liver with blood, yakk! how can you eat that. But really an anemia, it bothered me a lot, my family, my friend have it.

What is Anemia? Here is,

Your body makes three types of blood cells — White blood cells to fight infection, Platelets to help your blood clot and Red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout your body. Anemia is a decrease in number of red blood cells (Rb Cs) or lacks enough healthy red blood cells or less than the normal quantity of hemoglobin in the blood.

Hemoglobin (found inside Rb Cs) normally carries oxygen from the lungs to the capillaries, anemia leads to hypoxia (lack of oxygen) in organs. Since all human cells depend on oxygen for survival.
If you have too few or abnormal red blood cells, or your hemoglobin is abnormal or low, the cells in your body will not get enough oxygen. You will feel a fatigue it occurs because organs aren't getting what they need to function properly.

Anemia is not a diseases we can prevent it by taking foods and vitamins rich in iron, however, it an indication of serious illness if you have this type of anemia, such as, Hemolytic anemiaSickle cell   or Sideroblastic anemia  this type of anemia happen due to malfunctioning in our body and it needs an immediate medical attention but if everything alright it is due to nutritional deficiency from iron, vitamin B 12 or folic acid.

Anemia can be hereditary and infants may be affected from the time of birth. If the mother has an iron-deficiency anemia because of the blood loss from menstruation and the increased blood supply demands during pregnancy it possible that she transfer it to her baby. Older adults also may have a greater risk of developing anemia because of poor diet and other medical conditions.

Common types of anemia and their causes include: 
  • Iron deficiency anemia.
  • Vitamin deficiency anemias.
  • Anemia of chronic disease.
  • Aplastic anemia.
  • Hemolytic anemias.
  • Sickle cell anemia.
  • Red blood cells can be lost through bleeding inside of your body if you have ulcers, hemorrhoids, gastritis (inflammation of the stomach). Gastritis, menstrual bleeding is excessive and childbirth if there are multiple pregnancies.
  • Red blood cells may be faulty or decreased due to abnormal red blood cells or a lack of minerals and vitamins needed for red blood cells to work properly.
  • Iron-poor diet, especially in infants, children, teens, vegans, and vegetarians the metabolic demands of pregnancy and breastfeeding that deplete a woman's iron stores
  • Frequent blood donation
  • Endurance training
  • Vitamin-deficiency anemia may occur when vitamin B12 and folate are deficient.
  • Thalassemia anemia

What is the symptom of anemia? 
  • Fatigue (tiredness)
  • Lethargy - sluggishness, apathy, a feeling of laziness
  • Malaise - a vague feeling that one is not well
  • Dyspnea - shortness of breath; difficult or labored breathing
  • Poor concentration
  • Palpitations - unpleasant irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart
  • Sensitivity to cold temperatures

The following symptoms are possible, but less common Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) 
  • Headache
  • Sense of taste is affected
  • Sore tongue
  • Dysphagia- difficulty is swallowing
  • Pallor (pale complexion)
  • Atrophic glossitis - very smooth tongue
  • Dry and flaky nails
  • Angular chelosis - ulcers in the corner of the mouth
  • Restless leg syndrome - this is more common among patients with iron deficiency anemia.

How to diagnose an anemia?
  • Through a blood test will measure the patient's red blood count and levels of hemoglobin? 
  • Diet - what the patient eats, and whether his/her diet includes enough vitamins and minerals, - especially iron and vitamin B12.
  • Medications - what drugs the patient has been taking, how often, for how long, and what doses.
  • Menstruation - whether periods are heavy (menorrhagia) and whether heavy periods have been happening for a long time.
  • Family histories - whether any close relatives have/had anemia, blood disorders, or gastrointestinal bleeding/g. A close relative is usually limited to siblings and parents.
  • Medical history - whether the patient has a chronic disease.
  • Blood donation - whether the patient is a regular blood donor.
  • Rectal examination - a doctor may carry out a rectal examination to determine whether something in the gastrointestinal tract may be causing bleeding.
  • Pelvic examination - if the GP suspects heavy menstrual bleeding may be causing the anemia he/she may carry out a pelvic examination.

Treatment and Prevention.
According to mayo clinic the treatment for anemia depends on the cause. Here is some cause, such as;

  • Iron deficiency anemia. Is treated with changes in your diet and iron supplements.
  • Vitamin deficiency anemias. Folic acid and vitamin C deficiency anemias are treated with dietary supplements and increasing these nutrients in your diet
  • Aplastic anemia. Treatment may include blood transfusions to boost levels of red blood cells.
  • Hemolytic anemias. Treatment includes avoiding suspect medications, treating related infections and taking drugs that suppress your immune system, which may be attacking your red blood cells. Treatment with steroids or immune suppressant medications can help suppress your immune system's attack on your red blood cells.
  • Sickle cell anemia. Treatment may include the administration of oxygen, pain-relieving drugs, and oral and intravenous fluids to reduce pain and prevent complications.
  • Thalassemia anemia it may be treated with blood transfusions, folic acid supplements, removal of the spleen (splenectomy), a bone marrow transplant or a cancer drug


Other types of anemia can't be prevented. like those herederity anemia, but we avoid iron deficiency anemia and vitamin deficiency anemias by taking vitamins and nutrients and proper diet like, Iron-rich foods include beef and other meats, beans, lentils, iron-fortified cereals, dark green leafy vegetables, and dried fruit. Folate. This nutrient, and its synthetic form folic acid, can be found in citrus fruits and juices, bananas, dark green leafy vegetables, legumes and fortified breads, cereals, and pasta. Vitamin B-12. This vitamin is found naturally in meat and dairy products. It's also added to some cereals and soy products, such as soy milk. Vitamin C. Foods containing vitamin C —such as citrus fruits, melons and berries

This article is just for information about anemia if you suspect you have anemia, go to your doctor for proper diagnosis and medication. Especially if you have a family history of anemia.

Sources and References:

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