Anemia can happen for a few reasons. A common reason is a lack of iron. This is called “iron deficiency anemia.” You can have too little iron because:
●You have lost a large amount of blood – This can happen slowly over time, or all of a sudden. It is the most common cause of iron deficiency anemia.
●Your body cannot absorb enough iron from food – This can happen if you have had surgery on your stomach or intestines.
●You do not get enough iron in your food – This can be a problem in infants who drink milk without iron.
Blood loss can be related to stomach ulcers, bowel problems, or other issues. In women, blood loss can be related to heavy periods.
Whatever the cause of your anemia, your doctor or nurse can treat it by giving you iron. If the anemia is severe, you might need a blood transfusion. You might also need treatment for the cause of the bleeding.
People with iron deficiency anemia need to get iron. Eating foods with iron will not do enough to cure the anemia. You can get extra iron in pills or through a thin tube that goes into a vein, called an “IV.” Most people get it in pills. Your doctor or nurse will tell you how much to take, and for how long.
Iron pills can cause side effects such as upset stomach and constipation (too few bowel movements). If you have side effects, ask your doctor or nurse what to do. He or she can suggest ways to reduce these side effects, or switch you to IV iron.
Chronic Diseases: if you have diabetes, you might need to get your blood sugar under better control. Or if you have certain forms of chronic arthritis, you might get medicines to treat that.
Other treatment depends on your symptoms. If your anemia of chronic disease is causing no symptoms, it does not need to be treated.
If your anemia of chronic disease is causing symptoms, your doctor might treat it with:
●Medicines to help your body make more red blood cells, although this is not commonly done
●A blood transfusion – During a blood transfusion, you will get blood that has been donated by someone else. The donated blood goes into your vein. This is also very rarely used in this form of anemia.