Information About Anemia

Anemia is a condition in which the amount of hemoglobin in the blood is reduced below normal. You need to know why this happens and what can be done to improve your blood.

Diseases of the blood are sometimes life-threatening, but more often reduce the ability to lead an active life. For example, some people suffer from anemia. Anemia is a disorder in which the blood does not have enough red blood cells or there is not enough hemoglobin to carry an adequate supply of oxygen. It may manifest itself either by a reproduction of hemoglobin within the corpuscles themselves. Either form of hemoglobin deficiency results in anoxemia, or a lack of oxygen in the tissues. Anemic blood is paler in color than normal blood, so that of the characteristic symptoms of the sufferer if a pallor of the skin. Some who have anemia cannot perform physical exertions to any extent, tire easily and have shortness of breath. A person becomes weak, pale, and easily tired. Women lose blood naturally through menstruation. They are more susceptible to iron deficiency anemia. Iron deficiency anemia can often be controlled by iron supplements in the diet.

Some pregnant women have too little iron in their blood. anemia can occur because the fetus takes iron from the mother's blood stream to make its own red blood cells. An expecting mother who suffers from anemia will feel tired and weak during the pregnancy. Iron pills are usually prescribed.

There are several forms of anemia. One type is caused by excessive hemorrhage, for under these conditions the specific gravity of the blood is reduced, owing to the much greater proportion of fluid in the blood in comparison with the number of corpuscles. Anemia is also associated secondarily with such diseases as scurvy, hookworm, and malaria. One type, chlorosis, occurs in young women, usually about the time of puberty. It is caused by a reduced amount of hemoglobin in the corpuscles rather than a decreased number of corpuscles.

Another type of anemia is called pernicious anemia whereby there is an enormous decrease in the number of red blood corpuscles and serious changes in the nervous system, which result in a loss of sensation in the hands and feet. The number of red blood cells may be reduced to as low as a few hundred thousand instead of the normal count of more than five million per cubic millimeter.

The different forms of anemia can be caused by many reasons. One is that the cells in the body may be being destroyed for some reason. There are such poisonous substances such as aniline and lead derivatives that are known to destroy red blood cells. The blood forming tissues sometimes do not form new cells as fast as the old ones that are eliminated in the normal processes of the body.

In some forms of anemia like chlorosis increasing the amount of iron-bearing foods in the diet can help. Pernicious anemia does not benefit from such dietary treatment. The eating of liver or liver extracts has produced excellent results.

B complex vitamins, whether injected into the veins or taken orally seems to increase the formation of red cells in the bone marrow, so that the patients with low corpuscle count have an almost immediate increase of corpuscles. Ferrous iron is absorbed and utilized by the hemoglobin of the red cells better than ferric iron. The amount of iron that can be absorbed from foods is restricted, so that eating large quantities of foods with high iron content will not alone cure anemia.

If you feel tired, fatigue easily and just look pale, it is time to consult your physician.

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