Anemia

Dr Daniel J Bell et al.

Anemia is the presence of reduced hemoglobin in the blood. Formally, the World Health Organization (WHO) defines anemia by the hemoglobin concentration in the blood according to age and sex 1:

  • adult men: <130 g/L
  • adult women: <120 g/L

Values for pregnant women and children are different.

Pathology

Etiology

The etiology of anemia is traditionally categorized by the volume of the red cell, i.e. the mean cell volume (MCV), into microcytic (MCV <82 fL), normocytic (MCV = 82-98 fL) and macrocytic (MCV >98 fL) anemias. 

Microcytic (MCV <82 fL)
Normocytic (MCV = 82-98 fL) 
Macrocytic (MCV >98 fL)
  • dietary deficiency: vitamin B12, folate
  • medication toxicity: hydroxyurea, AZT, methotrexate
  • dyserythropoiesis, myelodysplastic syndrome, clonal haematologic disorder
  • hereditary haematologic disorders
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Article information

rID: 64273
System: Haematology
Section: Pathology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Anemic
  • Anaemic
  • Anemias
  • Anemia
  • Anaemias

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