Anemia means less number of erythrocytes or red blood cells in blood. qualitative or quantitative deficiency of hemoglobin, a molecule found inside red blood cells (RBCs). Since hemoglobin normally carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues, anemia leads to hypoxia (lack of oxygen) in organs. Since all human cells depend on oxygen for survival, varying degrees of anemia can have a wide range of clinical consequences. Anemia is also caused by a lack of iron in the body.
The three main classes of anemia include excessive blood loss (acutely such as a hemorrhage or chronically through low-volume loss), excessive blood cell destruction (hemolysis) or deficient red blood cell production (ineffective hematopoiesis).
Anemia is the most common disorder of the blood. There are several kinds of anemia, produced by a variety of underlying causes. Anemia can be classified in a variety of ways, based on the morphology of RBCs, underlying etiologic mechanisms, and discernible clinical spectra, to mention a few.
Anemia goes undetected in many people, and symptoms can be small and vague. Most commonly, people with anemia report a feeling of weakness or fatigue in general or during exercise, general malaise and sometimes poor concentration. People with more severe anemia often report dyspnea (shortness of breath) on exertion. Very severe anemia prompts the body to compensate by increasing cardiac output, leading to palpitations and sweatiness, and to heart failure.
Pallor (pale skin, mucosal linings and nail beds) is often a useful diagnostic sign in moderate or severe anemia, but it is not always apparent. Other useful signs are cheilosis and koilonychia.
Pica, the consumption of non-food based items such as dirt, paper, wax, grass, ice, and hair, may be a symptom of iron deficiency, although it occurs often in those who have normal levels of hemoglobin.Chronic anemia may result in behavioral disturbances in children as a direct result of impaired neurological development in infants, and reduced scholastic performance in children of school age.
TYPES OF ANEMIA:
1. Microcytic anemia-Microcytic anemia is primarily a result of hemoglobin synthesis failure/insufficiency. The kinds of this type of anemia are:
a. iron deficiency anemia.
b. sideroblastic anemia
2. Macrocytic anemia or Megaloblastic anemia- the most common cause of macrocytic anemia, is due to a deficiency of either vitamin B12, folic acid or both. The kinds of this type of anemia are:
a. Pernicious anemia.
3. Normocytic anemia-Normocytic anaemia occurs when the overall hemoglobin levels are always decreased, but the red blood cell size (Mean corpuscular volume-MCV) remains normal.
The kinds of this type of anemia are:
a. aplastic anemia.
b. hemolytic anemia.
4. Dimorphic anemia-When two causes of anemia act simultaneously, e.g., macrocytic hypochromic, due to hookworm infestation leading to deficiency of both iron and vitamin B12 or folic acid or following a blood transfusion more than one abnormality of red cell indices may be seen. Evidence for multiple causes appears with an elevated RBC distribution width (RDW), which suggests a wider-than-normal range of red cell sizes
5. Heinz body anemia-Heinz bodies form in the cytoplasm of RBCs and appear like small dark dots under the microscope. There are many causes of Heinz body anaemia, and some forms can be drug induced. It is triggered in cats by eating onions or acetaminophen (Tylenol). It can be triggered in dogs by ingesting onions or zinc, and in horses by ingesting dry red maple leaves
TREATMENT FOR ANEMIA:
Generally oral supplement and blood transfusions are the treatment for anemia.
Now we have seen briefly about anemia. As a medical transcription learner one should know about this compulsorily.
In the next lesson we will see about ischemia..ok
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