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what is Anemia:What are symptoms of anemia?

What is anemia?

Anemia is a very common blood disorder in which your blood has lower than the normal number of red blood cells. This condition can also occur if your red blood cells don't contain enough haemoglobin.Hemoglobin is a complex protein found in red blood cells that contains an iron molecule and gives blood its red colour. It is this protein that helps the red blood cells carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.

Severe or long-lasting anemia can damage your heart, brain, and other organs in your body. Very severe anemia may even cause death.

For men, anemia is typically defined as haemoglobin level of less than 13.5 gram/100 ml, and in women as haemoglobin of less than 12.0 gram/100 ml.

What are the signs and symptoms of anemia?

✓Feel tired
✓Fatigue easily
✓Appear pale
✓Develop palpitations (feeling of heart racing)
✓Notice shortness of breath

Additional anemia symptoms may include:

✓Hair loss
✓Malaise (general sense of feeling unwell)
✓Worsening of heart problems

If anemia is longstanding (chronic anemia), the body may adjust to low oxygen levels and the individual may not feel different unless the anemia becomes severe. On the other hand, if the anemia occurs rapidly (acute anemia), the patient may experience significant symptoms relatively quickly and with relatively mild fluctuations of hemoglobin levels.

Diagnosis of Anemia

*Blood tests

Sometimes anemia is detected before people notice symptoms when routine blood tests are done.

Low levels of hemoglobin or a low hematocrit (the percentage of red blood cells in the total blood volume) found in a blood sample confirm the anemia. Other tests, such as examining a blood sample under a microscope and, less often, examining a sample taken from the bone marrow, help determine the cause of the anemia.


Treatment should be directed at the cause of the anemia, and may include:

✓Blood transfusions

✓Corticosteroids or other medicines that suppress the immune system

✓Erythropoietin, a medicine that helps your bone marrow make more blood cells

✓Supplements of iron, vitamin B12, folic acid, or other vitamins and minerals

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