Anemia is a pathological condition identified by a reduction of haemoglobin levels (the responsible protein for transporting the oxygen). Such protein reduction causes difficulty in the movement of oxygen.

This condition can occur also following a decrease in: the number, the volume of circulating red blood cells (cells that carry haemoglobin) and concentration of haemoglobin.

Symptoms that most frequently characterize anemia are:

  • Paleness
  • Tachycardia
  • Tiredness
  • Exertional dyspnea
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Increased susceptibility to infections


What kind of diseases can be associated with anemia?

The following diseases may be associated with anemia:

  • Anemia
  • Angiodysplasia
  • Colon cancer
  • Celiac disease
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Kidney failure
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Malaria
  • Chagas disease
  • Wilson disease
  • Polycythemia vera
  • Intestinal polyps
  • Mallory-Weiss syndrome
  • Typhus
  • Toxoplasmosis
  • Kidney cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Duodenal ulcer
  • Gastric ulcer

Remember that this is not an exhaustive list and it is highly recommended to consult your doctor, in case of symptom’s persistence.


What is the therapy for anemia?

The treatment of anemia depends on the underlying cause or the origin of anemia:

  • If there is a deficiency of folic acid, it is enough to integrate the missing vitamin orally
  • If there is a deficiency of vitamin B12, the treatment includes intramuscular injections of the same vitamin
  • If there is an iron deficiency anemia or iron deficiency, it is necessary to resort to administration of ferrous salts, typically orally. In some patients it may be preferable to administer iron salts intramuscularly or intravenously (that happens especially in cases of oral malabsorption)
  • Blood transfusions are used in cases of very severe anemia or are reserved for anemic patients who cannot be subjected to other types of treatment.
  • In the event of underweight or overweight patients, the cause of anemia may be unregulated power supply. In this case, the first therapeutic measure is improvement of eating habits.


When is most likely to contact your doctor in case of anemia?

In case of symptoms of anemia, it is always good to consult your doctor, especially if you are suffering from a disease related to this disorder (see list associated diseases).