The anemia is a very diverse disease, having several causes of their appearance, some types are very common and others are very rare, some very mild and other serious even to be fatal if proper time behavior is not taken.
The anemia is the expression of the decrease in hemoglobin levels below normal limits, secondary to decreased the number of erythrocytes or red blood cells functioning.
The main function of red blood cells is to transport oxygen to the various tissues of the body in order to provide energy to the cell. The way the red blood cell can transport oxygen is through the union of this molecule with the hemoglobin inside the red blood cell and that is why the decrease in hemoglobin directly causes anemia.
Causes of anemia
The anemia occurs when the body produces too few red blood cells, if you destroy too many red blood cells or if you lose. Many diseases, health problems and other factors can cause anemia, these can be acquired or inherited.
In some cases, the cause of anemia is not known after studying the patient, which is known as idiopathic. Depending on the type of anemia, the cause will be different, such as:
This type of anemia occurs when the bone marrow cannot make the precursor cells for blood cells, including red blood cells and white blood cells or leukocytes. So anemia, in this case, is also accompanied by a weak immune system that is not able to fight efficiently against infections.
In pregnancy, there is a physiological increase in blood volume (volume of blood), which secondarily generates a decrease in the number of red blood cells and consequently in hemoglobin levels.
It is an autoimmune disorder, in the case of certain disorders they cause antibodies to be produced that destroy red blood cells, generating in turn anemia.
It occurs due to the inability of the parietal cells of the stomach to produce the so-called intrinsic factor, necessary to properly absorb vitamin B12 (cobalamin), which is necessary for the production of red blood cells.
Deficiency anemia (due to a deficiency of iron, folic acid and vitamin B 12)
These components are necessary for the metabolic functions of the blood, so the decrease in the intake of iron, folic acid and / or vitamin B12 (due to malnutrition) or the depletion of iron stores (due to acute or chronic disease) affects the production of red blood cells, causing anemia.
Anemia secondary to hemorrhage
Heavy active bleeding, either from a viscus (internal) or external (through mucosa or breakdown in the skin or bone), can cause anemia due to the loss of the formed elements of the blood, including red blood cells.
There are some congenital diseases that affect the shape of the red blood cell and, therefore, its functions. These include sickle cell anemia, spherocytosis, and thalassemias.
Symptoms of anemia
Symptoms of anemia will depend on the time of onset of anemia and its severity. The most frequent are:
• Cutaneous-mucosal paleness.
• Tiredness or weakness
• Sweating predominantly at night.
• Weak and rapid pulse.
• Fast breathing.
• Feeling short of breath
• Cramps (paresthesias) in lower limbs.
• Arrhythmias, murmurs, heart failure, tachycardia, palpitations, etc.
If you present any of these symptoms, you should consult your doctor.
Most anemias can be treated, depending on the type of anemia diagnosed, as well as the time of onset and the severity of the patient's conditions.
The main goals of treatment are:
• Increase red cell counts or hemoglobin concentration to improve the ability of the blood to carry oxygen.
• Treat the underlying pathology or cause that is causing the anemia.
• Overcome symptoms and improve quality of life.
• Implement a balanced diet with intake of iron, folic acid and vitamin B complex, if necessary.
• Prevent complications of anemia.
Finally, it is advisable that a timely diagnosis should be made in order to treat anemia promptly in the most appropriate way, being convenient in some cases only to modify the diet and take nutritional supplements.
In other more severe cases, it may be necessary not only the use of some medications, but also diagnostic procedures such as bone marrow biopsies, or therapeutic procedures, such as blood transfusions or bone marrow transplantation, among others.
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