What is anemia?

Anemia is a condition with a decrease in oxygen carrying capacity of blood. The function of the RBCs is to deliver oxygen from the lungs to rest of body organs. In anemia, a decrease in the number of RBCs and hemoglobin result in reduced oxygenation of body organs.

What are the signs and symptoms of anemia?

The main sign and symptoms include fatigue, weakness, pale or yellowish skin, cold hands and feet, irregular heartbeats, shortness of breath, dizziness or lightheadedness and headaches.

What are the causes of anemia?

There are many reasons for deficient of iron. These include:

  • Inadequate iron intake: Eating too little iron over a long time can cause a shortage in your body. Foods such as eggs, meat and some green leafy vegetables are high in iron.
  • Pregnancy or blood loss due to menstruation: Heavy menstrual bleeding, blood loss during childbirth and higher demand for iron during pregnancy are the most common causes of iron deficiency anemia in women of childbearing age.
  • Internal bleeding: Some medical conditions can cause internal bleeding, which can result in iron deficiency anemia. Examples include an ulcer in your stomach, polyps in intestines, or colon cancer. Regular use of pain killers, such as aspirin, can also cause bleeding in the stomach.
  • Inability to absorb iron: Certain disorders or surgeries that affect the intestines can also interfere with how your body absorbs iron. Even if you get sufficient iron in your diet, celiac disease or intestinal surgery such as gastric bypass may reduce the absorption of iron your body.
Which people are at the risk of anemia?

Anemia is a common condition that can occur in both men and women of any age. Some people may be at higher risk of iron deficiency anemia than others, including:

  • Women of childbearing age
  • Pregnant women
  • People with poor diets
  • New born baby and children, especially those born prematurely or experiencing delayed growth
  • Vegetarians who do not eat iron-rich food
Which lab test findings suggest anemia?

A complete blood count (CBC) is generally the first test a doctor will recommend. A CBC measures amount of all components in the blood, including:

  • Red blood cells (RBCs)
  • White blood cells (WBCs)
  • Haemoglobin
  • Hematocrit
  • Platelets

In iron deficiency anemia, the haemoglobin and hematocrit levels are low.

Which are the complications of anemia?

Most cases of anemia are mild and don’t cause complications. However, if anemia or iron deficiency is left untreated, it can result in various health problems. These include:

  • Heart disease: When you’re anemic, your heart has to pump more blood to make up for the low amount of oxygen. This can lead to an irregular heartbeat. In severe cases, it can lead to heart failure
  • Pregnancy complications: In severe cases of iron deficiency, a child may be born too early and prematurely or with low birth weight.
  • Delayed growth in infants and children: Infants and children who are severely deficient in iron may experience delayed growth and development. They may also be more susceptible for infections.
What dietary changes should I do to prevent iron deficiency anemia?

You can avoid iron deficiency anemia by eating iron-rich foods include meats, beans, lentils, iron-fortified cereals, dark green leafy vegetables, and dried fruit. Combine vegetarian sources of iron with vitamin C which will help for the absorption of iron. For example: a bell pepper-bean salad, spinach with lemon juice, or fortified cereal and berries.

Can you prevent anemia in pregnancy?

You can prevent anemia in pregnancy by dietary modifications like inclusion of green-leafy vegetables, meat and poultry, iron fortified foods. Also By taking iron and folic acid supplementation from second trimester (4th Month) of pregnancy as prescribed by your doctor.

In pregnancy how long should I take oral iron supplementations and at what dose?

Daily, 1 iron (100mg) and folic acid (500mg) tablet starting from the fourth month and to be continued for 6 months after delivery.

What is the dose of ferrous Ascorbate and its side effects?

Usually this medication needs to be taken once a day. Consult a doctor before taking Orofer XT. Common side effects of ferrous Ascorbate are nausea, hyperacidity, diarrhoea, constipation, gastritis, vomiting, pain in abdomen, black discolouration of stools.

Is there any need to adjust dose of ferrous ascorbate in elderly patient.

No need for dose adjustment of ferrous ascorbate in an elderly patient

Can Ferric Carboxymaltose injection be given after oral iron dose of 1 or 2 months?

Ferric carboxymaltose can be given after 1 or 2 months of oral iron if target Hb has not been achieved.

What is the good time to start oral iron after FCM infusion?

Oral iron therapy should not be started for at least two weeks after the last injection of FCM.

When to reassess for Hemoglobin levels after FCM injection?

The Hb level should be re-assessed no earlier than 4 weeks post final FCM administration to allow adequate time for RBC formation and iron utilisation.

How soon does Hemoglobin increase after Ferric Carboxymaltose injection?

Increase in haemoglobin is seen as early as one to two weeks after ferric carboxymaltose injection.