Treatment of Anemia Includes Sufferers Realizing They Are Not Alone

Treatment of Anemia Includes Sufferers Realizing They Are Not Alone

Many individuals suffer from iron deficiency anemia and when they do, treatment centers on increasing their iron so they hit regular levels in the body but it needs to also include sufferers realizing they are not alone so they do not suffer in silence. Doctors must identify and control any situations that created the anemia and also focus on mental issues as well.

There could be diseases or conditions, such as bleeding in the stomach that must be corrected to fix the problem. Also individuals may not have enough iron in their diets or they might not be able to absorb iron correctly for some reason. If so, then it must be discovered how to increase iron levels.

Sometimes by ingesting supplement iron pills and getting enough iron in food will help correct many instances of iron deficient anemia. People can usually take iron pills between one and three times each day. In order to receive the top value from the supplements, it is always best to take them with ascorbic acid, which is vitamin C, such as in orange juice. Vitamin C aids the human body in absorbing even more iron.

The majority of individuals will begin feeling better within a couple of days after starting treatment. However even though they are, the treatment will need to continue for a number of months to build up iron amounts in the body. It might even be six or more months of treatment with iron supplements before levels of iron start to come back to normal.

If some people find they are having trouble with taking iron pills or their bodies do not absorb enough iron from them, they will probably have to turn to getting iron through IV therapy. If the anemia is severe enough, a blood transfusion will possibly be given to help fix the anemia quickly and then start on iron supplements and a diet which is high in iron. It can be mentally taxing receiving a blood transfusion. Individuals may have fears about diseases such as HIV and they need to be addressed by the hospital officials giving the transfusion. There is no chance of getting such a disease through a blood transfusion because blood is carefully tested and screened so do not let fears stand in the way of getting better. Be sure to ask questions if things are not explained fully.

The primary care physician will then start to watch the condition by using blood tests, such as complete blood counts or CBC’s, iron tests and a reticulocyte count which checks to see how all the treatments are working. Reticulocytes are young red blood cells created by bone marrow and released into the bloodstream. When reticulocyte counts go up, this means that iron replacement treatments are probably working correctly.

Most usually, people can eradicate iron deficiency anemia by ingesting iron pills and adding more iron to their diet. If anemia is not fixed with such treatments, the doctor might have to do even more testing to find out if there are other causes of the anemia, such as hidden bleeding or some medical condition causing the body not to absorb iron from supplements. Such tests might be similar to the ones initially used to identify anemia in the first place.

If iron deficiency anemia is suspected, never take iron pills without first seeing a doctor. Taking iron pills could postpone the finding of a serious medical problem such as a bleeding ulcer or even colorectal cancer. If the anemia is not caused by iron deficiency, ingesting iron pills will not help the anemia and could cause an overdose or iron toxicity. It could also create an iron overload called hemochromatosis, especially in people who have a genetic condition toward keeping too much iron inside the body.

Numerous people suffer from iron shortage anemia and when they do, treatment centers around increasing their iron so they hit regular levels in the body but individuals should be treated mentally as well.

By Kimberly Ruble


The N.Y. Times

National Institute of Health


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