Anemia: what it is and what a health hazard?
Human blood consists of liquid plasma and in it formed elements:
- colorless cells called leukocytes;
- platelets – platelets;
- red cells or erythrocytes.
They are strictly defined role.
The primary duty of red blood cells – carry oxygen from the lungs to the tissues and waste carbon dioxide in the opposite direction. Their functions also include the regulation of acid-base balance of the blood, the saturation cells amino acids, enzymes and vitamins from the digestive system, the collection and elimination of toxins. The main burden thus falls on the hemoglobin, which is filled with erythrocytes. Thanks to its biochemical structure of the red blood cells do their task. It is a compound of a specific protein globin and heme molecules, composed of the iron particles.
Normal healthy red blood cells often have a concave form on both sides of the disk. This kind of two-way funnel facilitates the movement of elements in the blood plasma and the absorption of oxygen.
The formation of red blood cells or erythropoiesis occurs in the bone marrow. For this the human body as a building materials shall be sufficiently to iron, vitamins B12, B2, B6, E, PP and folic acid, minerals: copper, Nickel, cobalt, zinc and selenium.
Anemia is a condition associated with an abnormal condition of red blood cells. Often it is called anemia. The reason is the insufficient number of red blood cells or morphological changes, low hemoglobin, or a combination of these problems.
The main symptom of anemia is reduction of hemoglobin that occurs with any problems related to red blood cells.
Anemia is considered a painful condition, and not an independent disease. It is a harbinger of deeper pathologies, requiring thorough diagnosis, identify the causes and required treatment.
The influence of gender on the level of hemoglobin
The formation of red blood cells is additionally stimulated by male sex hormones. Therefore, a normal hemoglobin level in the strong half of the mankind above. One of the promoters of the emergence of anemia in adult females is the menstrual cycle and the load on the circulatory system of the expectant mother while carrying a child.
Common symptoms of anemia: when should I contact the doctor?
The presence of symptoms depends on the magnitude of the drop in the level of hemoglobin in the blood. With a slight deterioration in the human body is able to compensate for the deficiency of oxygen in tissues.
Characteristic symptoms occur when the body resources are not enough and there is a hypoxia of cells. First and foremost, the devastating impact of the exposed brain and heart. When red blood cells do not fully perform their duties of saturation of the tissues with oxygen and nutrients, the first signs of anemia are fatigue and weakness. On the occurrence of anemia may indicate:
- noise in the ears;
- shortness of breath;
- flies flashing before my eyes;
- pallor of the skin;
- heart palpitations;
- disorders of the stomach.
The presence of these symptoms gives reason to go to the doctor and to conduct a study qualitative and quantitative characteristics of blood. Only on the basis of the made analyses, it is possible to establish the cause of the disease, the severity of, determine a course of treatment.
Classification of anemia
Many factors is the cause of the disruption of red blood cells and lack of hemoglobin in the body. In the international classification of diseases (ICD-10), adopted in 2007, the category of «Anemia» is one of the biggest. It contains more than 400 codes of the varieties of anemia. Reference ICD-10 in the etiology of the disease is divided into three groups:
- the resulting bleeding;
- due to the improper formation of red blood cells (insufficient number of or change in the morphological structure);
- occurring as a result of hemolysis – rupture of the walls of red blood cells and plasma hemoglobin.
There is an additional classification and coding of anemia depending on the degree of deficiency of hemoglobin in the patient:
- mild (greater than 100 g/l);
- average (100-66 g/l);
- heavy (less than 66 g/l).
Proper treatment and recovery for anemia depends on the setting of the type and causes of disease. Violation of the formation and functioning of red blood cells associated with the deficiency of certain vitamins and minerals can be corrected with medication or a balanced diet. For the treatment of anemia resulting from abnormal and (or) chronic changes in the organism, requires a comprehensive approach.
To briefly review all types of anemia is difficult, but there are a few common and characteristic types of the disease.
This is a group of disease States in which the decrease in hemoglobin is due to blood loss. This may be caused by chronic bleeding due to:
- all types of ulcers, gastritis, other diseases of the stomach and intestines, hemorrhoids, uterine bleeding;
- diseases of the liver and kidneys;
- the aortic aneurysm;
- taking certain anticoagulants, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs;
- mechanical damage to body tissues.
The treatment is to eliminate the blood loss and the regulation of the hemoglobin level with the help of a balanced diet, medicines containing iron, ascorbic and folic acid, minerals, vitamins.
Anemia caused by disruption of the formation of red blood cells
Deficiency of hemoglobin is the result:
- reducing the number of red blood cells;
- changes caused by lack of necessary for their formation of substances;
- failure in the education system of red blood cells;
- a malfunction of the bone marrow and other similar etiology causes.
Sickle cell anemia
This condition is caused by a pathological change in the shape of the erythrocyte. Instead of the normal disc-shaped appearance of cells look like a Crescent, resulting in a reduction in the functionality of hemoglobin and worse the passage of particles through the capillaries. One of the consequences of this disease – a blockage of the abnormal blood cells of the vessel. It is accompanied by pains in the limbs and body. The time of development and the possible nature of the symptoms of this type of anemia has not been established.
This type of anemia is genetic. The child is ill, if the abnormal shape of red blood cells of both parents. If the father or the mother is healthy, their heir is the changed gene.
The treatment of the patient is life from the moment of diagnosis. It consists in constant monitoring of health status, course administration of drugs, in some cases, the required periodic blood transfusions. The patient needs to constantly monitor the factors that trigger acute attacks of the disease, which can lead to heart attack and occurrence of infectious complications.
Anemia caused by iron deficiency
Iron enters the body with food, may accumulate in the bone marrow, spleen and liver and excreted from the body together with all kinds of secretions: sweat, urine, bowel movements, breastfeeding and menstrual bleeding. As causes of anemia in this type are:
Anemia lack of vitamin B12 and folic acid
The disadvantage of these vitamins is possible with a limited consumption of certain foods – meat, yeast, liver, eggs. The reason, as with iron deficiency anemia can also be a great physical exertion on the body of adults and problems of the gastrointestinal tract.
Disruption of bone marrow stem cells
Insufficient quantity of this type of cells and their deformation lead to incorrect formation of red blood cells. The reason for the occurrence of the disease may be several.
Aplastic anemia is the lack of education of all types of young blood cells. The reason may be:
- genetic predisposition;
- side effects of medical drugs;
- disorders caused by infectious diseases;
- intensive therapy for cancer.
Aplastic anemia occurs when damage to the bone marrow and inability to produce erythrocytes, leukocytes and platelets in an amount necessary for the body. Is a dangerous form of the disease, as blood is almost not replenished and functions of its elements are not met.
Thalassemia is a lack of synthesis of abnormal proteins – globin. The consequence of this is the production of defective red blood cells, is unable to perform its functions. This disease is genetic and is most often found in natives of Africa, the Mediterranean, the middle East. There are several varieties of this type of anemia, the most severe – anemia Cooley.
Hemolytic types of anemia
This type of anemia occurs when the rate of erythropoiesis is inferior to the speed of hemolysis – destruction of red blood cells and leakage of hemoglobin into the plasma.
The cause of the disease may be genetic predisposition or external factors, such as viral and infectious diseases, some types of antibiotics, drugs to normalize blood pressure and cardiac activity.
The fragility of the walls of red blood cells may be associated with changes in acid-base balance. It cause some of chemical and biological poisoning with chloroform or ether, and the bites of snakes, insects, or toxins of microorganisms. Unlike other types of anemia is difficult to treat.
Diagnostic blood tests
Order to determine the exact kind of anemia it is necessary to make a number of blood tests. Conclusions about the causes of the lack of hemoglobin are made only on the basis of the totality of the results, as some violations may be similar in different types of anemia. In addition to hemoglobin levels, to assess additional indicators of healthy red blood cells.
The normal concentration of erythrocytes in blood is more than 3 T/l, less than three is a sign of anaemia, and less than 2 T/l is an indicator of serious problems.
Color index (CPU) of blood is considered normal if 1. Thus the patient may experience the types of normochromic anemia acute posthemorrhagic and hemolytic. CPU increased (hyperchromic) can be used to treat anemia associated with deficiency of vitamins, and under reduced (hypochromic) – iron deficiency or thalassemia.
The average diameter of erythrocytes (SDE) are considered closer to the norm with the figure of 7.2-8 microns. Natural size of red blood cells (normality) is preserved in acute posthemorrhagic and hemolytic types of anemia. The increase in the size of red blood cells (macrocytic, SDE) is accompanied by folic acid deficiency, the lack of vitamin B12 in these particle diameter of 9.5 microns (megaloblastny). Iron deficiency is expressed in decreasing of red blood cells to a size of 7.2 microns smaller (microcytic, SDE).
In the study of the iron content in blood normal is an indicator 9,0–31,3 mkmol/l. exceeding the target is called hyperkalaemia, and the lack – hipposideridae. Relationship with the types of anemia is the same as the color of the indicator. The indicator of the level of hemoglobin is influenced by the concentration of the fluid in the blood – thinning of blood or clots.
Anemia causes a number of problems in the vital systems of the body. But in case of timely diagnosing and treating the patient with anemia can lead a normal lifestyle.