Get to know what Aplastic Anemia is
Aplastic anemia occurs when your bone marrow doesn’t make enough red and white blood cells, and platelets. Having fewer red blood cells causes hemoglobin to drop. Hemoglobin is the part of blood that carries oxygen through your body. Having fewer white blood cells makes you more likely to get an infection. And having fewer platelets makes the blood too thin. This means your blood can’t clot the way it should. Aplastic anemia symptoms usually develop over weeks and months, so you may not notice changes in your body right away. In some cases, people have immediate severe symptoms. If you do develop symptoms, they may include:
- Frequent viral infections that last longer than usual.
- Bleeding or bruising more easily
- Feeling short of breath (dyspnea)
- Skin color that’s paler than usual
Some aplastic anemia symptoms mimic other, less serious illnesses. Having a cold or flu doesn’t mean you have aplastic anemia. You should talk to a healthcare provider if you’ve been sick for several weeks and you feel very tired all the time. Blood consists of blood cells floating in plasma. Plasma is mostly made of water. It also includes salts, proteins, hormones, minerals, vitamins and other nutrients and chemicals your body needs.
What are the 3 Basic Types of Blood Cells?
- Red blood cells (RBCs) are also called erythrocytes. They make up almost half of blood. Red blood cells are filled with the protein hemoglobin that picks up oxygen in the lungs and brings it to cells all around the body
- White blood cells (WBCs) are also called leukocytes. They fight disease and infection by attacking and killing germs that get into the body. There are several kinds of white blood cells, each of which fights a different kind of germ
- Platelets are also called thrombocytes. They are small pieces of cells that help blood clot and stop bleeding
Treatment Options for Aplastic Anemia
Treatment depends on the severity of your condition. Some mild forms of aplastic anemia don’t require treatment. Stopping a medication or staying away from possible chemicals may be recommended. Many moderate cases require blood and platelet transfusions. Transfusions are generally necessary for acute cases. Bone marrow transplants can be used to treat severe cases. This procedure replaces your stem cells with those from a donor. The treatment works best in people under 40 years who have sibling donors. To prevent heavy blood loss that cannot be replaced fast enough by the body, ablationTrusted Source is an option for endometriosis.
Severe and acute idiopathic aplastic anemia can be fatal. Proper treatment is key. Younger people have the best survival rates, as they generally respond well to treatment.
Potential treatment complications include:
- adverse drug reactions
- severe bleeding
- bone marrow transplant failure
Aplastic Anemia Prevention
There is no known way to prevent idiopathic aplastic anemia. Unlike other forms of anemia, it can’t be prevented by using iron supplements. Pay attention to your body and talk to your doctor if you develop anemia symptoms. Prompt treatment can help keep you feeling well.