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  • Nutritional anemia


    Nutritional anemia refers to the low concentration of hemoglobin due to poor diet. According to the World Health Organization, a hemoglobin concentration below 7.5 mmol/L and 8. mmol/L for women and men, respectively, is considered to be anemic. Thus, anemia can be diagnosed with blood tests. Hemoglobin is used to transport and deliver oxygen in the body. Without oxygen, the human body cannot undergo respiration and create ATP, thereby depriving cells of energy. Nutritional anemia is caused by a lack of iron, protein, B12, and other vitamins and minerals that needed for the formation of hemoglobin. Folic acid deficiency is a common association of nutritional anemia and iron deficiency anemia is the most common nutritional disorder. Signs of anemia include cyanosis, jaundice, and easy bruising. In addition, anemic patients may experience difficulties with memory and concentration, fatigue, lightheadedness, sensitivity to temperature, low energy levels, shortness of breath, and pale skin. Symptoms of severe or rapid-onset anemia are very dangerous as the body is unable to adjust to the lack of hemoglobin. This may result in shock and death. Mild and moderate anemia have symptoms that develop slowly over time.5 If patients believe that they are at risk for or experience symptoms of anemia, they should contact their doctor. Treatments for nutritional anemia includes replacement therapy is used to elevate the low levels of nutrients.1 Diet improvement is a way to combat nutritional anemia and this can be done by taking dietary supplements such as iron, folate, and Vitamin B12.2 These supplements are available over-the-counter however, a doctor may prescribe prescription medicine as needed, depending on the patient’s health needs. Internationally, anemia caused by iron deficiencies is the most common nutritional disorder. It is the only significantly prevalent nutritional deficiency disorder in industrialized countries. In poorer areas, anemia is worsened by infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, hookworm infestation, and Malaria. In developing countries, about 40% of preschool children and 50% of pregnant women are estimated to be anemic. 20% of maternal deaths can be contributed to anemia. Health consequences of anemia include low pregnancy outcome, impaired cognitive and physical development, increased rate of morbidity, and reduced rate of work in adults. ' Nutritional Anemia has many different causes, each either nutritional or non-nutritional. Nutritional causes are vitamin and mineral deficiencies and non-nutritional causes can be infections. The number one cause of this type of anemia however is iron deficiency. An insufficient intake of iron, Vitamin B12, and folic acid impairs the bone marrow function. The lack of iron within a person’s body can also stem from ulcer bacteria. These microbes live in the digestive track and after many years cause ulcer’s in the lining of your stomach or small intestine. Therefore, a high percentage of patients with nutritional anemia may have potential gastrointestinal disorder that causes chronic blood loss. This is common in immunocompromised, elderly, and diabetic people. High blood loss can also come from increases loss of blood during menstruation, childbirth, cancers of the intestines, and a disorder that hinders blood’s ability to coagulate. Medications can have adverse effects and cause nutritional anemia as well. Medications that stop the absorption of iron in the gut and cause bleeding from the gut (NSAIDs and Aspirin) can be culprits in the development of this condition. Hydrocortisones and valproic acid are also two drugs that cause moderate bleeding from the gut. Amoxicillin and phenytoin are the ability to cause a vitamin B12 deficiency. Other common causes are thyroid disorders, lead toxcities, infectious diseases (e.g Malaria), Alcoholism, and Vitamin E deficiency.Symptoms Symptoms of nutritional anemia can include fatigue and lack of energy. However if symptoms progress, one may experience shortness of breath, rapid pulse, paleness --especially in the hands, eyelids and fingernails---, swelling of ankles, hair loss, lightheadedness, compulsive and atypical cravings, constipation, depression, muscle twitching, numbness, or burning and chest pain. Those who have nutritional anemia often show little to no symptoms. Often, symptoms can go undetected as mild forms of the anemia have only minor symptoms. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 “Micronutrient deficiencies” World Health Organization. Accessed March 31, 2017. 2 Ibid. 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid 5 Ibid 6 Ibid ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Ibid. 2 “Treatments for Nutritional anemia.” Right Diagnosis. Assessed March 31, 2017. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Ibid. 2 “What are the symptoms of anemia?” Health Grades, INC. Accessed March 31, 2017. . 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid. 5 Ibid. 6 Ibid ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Ibid. 2 Ibid. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 "Nutritional Anemia." The Free Dictionary. Accessed March 31, 2017. . 2 Ibid. 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid.Nutritional anemia refers to types of anemia that can be directly attributed to nutritional disorders. Examples include Iron deficiency anemia and pernicious anemia. It is often discussed in a pediatric context.

  • Iron deficiency


    Iron deficiency, or sideropaenia, is the state in which a body has not enough (or not qualitatively enough) iron to supply its eventual needs. Iron is present in all cells in the human body and has several vital functions, such as carrying oxygen to the tissues from the lungs as a key component of the hemoglobin protein, acting as a transport medium for electrons within the cells in the form of cytochromes, and facilitating oxygen enzyme reactions in various tissues. Too little iron can interfere with these vital functions and lead to morbidity and death. Total body iron averages approximately 3.8 g in men and 2.3 g in women. In blood plasma, iron is carried tightly bound to the protein transferrin. There are several mechanisms that control human iron metabolism and safeguard against iron deficiency. The main regulatory mechanism is situated in the gastrointestinal tract. When loss of iron is not sufficiently compensated by adequate intake of iron from the diet, a state of iron deficiency develops over time. When this state is uncorrected, it leads to iron deficiency anemia. Before anemia occurs, the medical condition of iron deficiency without anemia is called latent iron deficiency (LID) or Iron-deficient erythropoiesis (IDE). Untreated iron deficiency can lead to iron deficiency anemia, a common type of anemia. Anemia is a condition characterized by inadequate red blood cells (erythrocytes) or hemoglobin. Iron deficiency anemia occurs when the body lacks sufficient amounts of iron, resulting in reduced production of the protein hemoglobin. Hemoglobin binds to oxygen, thus enabling red blood cells to supply oxygenated blood throughout the body. Children, pre-menopausal women (women of child-bearing age) and people with poor diet are most susceptible to the disease. Most cases of iron deficiency anemia are mild, but if not treated can cause problems like fast or irregular heartbeat, complications during pregnancy, and delayed growth in infants and children.

  • Anemia


    Anemia is a decrease in the total amount of red blood cells (RBCs) or hemoglobin in the blood, or a lowered ability of the blood to carry oxygen. When anemia comes on slowly, the symptoms are often vague and may include feeling tired, weakness, shortness of breath or a poor ability to exercise. Anemia that comes on quickly often has greater symptoms, which may include confusion, feeling like one is going to pass out, loss of consciousness, or increased thirst. Anemia must be significant before a person becomes noticeably pale. Additional symptoms may occur depending on the underlying cause. The three main types of anemia are due to blood loss, decreased red blood cell production, and increased red blood cell breakdown. Causes of blood loss include trauma and gastrointestinal bleeding, among others. Causes of decreased production include iron deficiency, a lack of vitamin B12, thalassemia, and a number of neoplasms of the bone marrow. Causes of increased breakdown include a number of genetic conditions such as sickle cell anemia, infections like malaria, and certain autoimmune diseases.

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