Symptoms of anemia

When it comes to anemia, there are a number of different symptoms. These symptoms actually vary according to the specific type of anemia you have, although many types share some common symptoms. You may also experience a number of symptoms based on the underlying cause of your anemia. These causes can include things like ulcers, certain types of cancer, hemorrhages, and menstrual problems. It’s also possible that you may have a very mild case of anemia or that your anemia may have developed over a fairly long period of time. In these cases, your body might have adjusted naturally so you won’t notice any signs at all.

Symptoms that are common to all types of anemia include a loss of energy and a feeling of fatigue all the time. Even simple tasks such as doing a load of laundry can make you feel out of breath and exhausted. You may also have an unusually rapid heart beat, especially when exercising, and you may feel a headache or a shortness of breath after you work out. You might have difficulty concentrating, suffer from insomnia, feel dizzy, have pale skin, and suffer from random and painful leg cramps.

There are six major types of anemia that have their own symptoms in addition to the ones listed above. These types of anemia are determined by cause. If you are anemic because you have an iron deficiency, you may experience some soreness around your mouth, and the corners of your mouth may develop some fine cracks. You might also find yourself experiencing pica, or the hunger for odd things like ice, paper, and even dirt. Finally, you may also notice that your finger and toenails start to curve upwards, a condition called koilonychias.

If your anemia is caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency, you may suffer from symptoms that resemble those of peripheral neuropathy. These symptoms include tingling in your hands or feet, difficulty walking or a change in the way you walk, a loss of your sense of touch, or some stiffness in your arms and legs. In advanced cases of vitamin B-12 deficiency and anemia, you may even start to hallucinate, become paranoid, or suffer from dementia or schizophrenia.

Chronic lead poisoning can also cause anemia. In this type of anemia, symptoms include constipation, vomiting, and abdominal pain. A “lead line,” or a black/blue line on or around the gums, may also appear.

Another cause of anemia is chronic red blood cell destruction. Here, the specific symptoms include brown or reddish colored urine, jaundice (yellow skin), the symptoms of gallstones without actually having gallstones, and leg ulcers. These symptoms are very similar to anemia caused by sudden red blood cell destruction. However, in this case, instead of gallstones or leg ulcers, a person may experience seizures, have the symptoms of kidney failure, and have small bruises appear on their bodies.

In sickle cell anemia, you experience even worse fatigue than usual, so much so that it may be difficult to get out of bed. You may also be much more susceptible to other infections. As a child, those with sickle cell anemia do not grow or develop as fast. Severe pain, especially in the limbs, abdomen, and joints, is also common.

It is very important that you contact your doctor if you start to consistently see these signs of anemia, especially if they are signs of anemia related to the destruction of red blood cells or severe symptoms of a deficiency. In many cases, anemia can easily be dealt with by taking a simple vitamin supplement on a daily basis, but it must be diagnosed first.

Last updated on Apr 4th, 2010 and filed under Other Conditions & Diseases. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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