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Autoimmune hemolytic anemia
Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency
Hemolytic disease of the newborn
Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria
Pyruvate kinase deficiency
Sickle cell disease (NORD)
Folate (Vitamin B9) deficiency
Vitamin B12 deficiency
Anemia of chronic disease
Iron deficiency anemia
Vitamin K deficiency
Langerhans cell histiocytosis
Essential thrombocythemia (NORD)
Polycythemia vera (NORD)
Acute intermittent porphyria
Porphyria cutanea tarda
Disseminated intravascular coagulation
Von Willebrand disease
Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance
Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura
Antithrombin III deficiency
Factor V Leiden
Protein C deficiency
Protein S deficiency
Coagulation disorders: Pathology review
Extrinsic hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Heme synthesis disorders: Pathology review
Intrinsic hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Leukemias: Pathology review
Lymphomas: Pathology review
Macrocytic anemia: Pathology review
Microcytic anemia: Pathology review
Mixed platelet and coagulation disorders: Pathology review
Myeloproliferative disorders: Pathology review
Non-hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Plasma cell disorders: Pathology review
Platelet disorders: Pathology review
Thrombosis syndromes (hypercoagulability): Pathology review
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Iron Deficiency Anemia & Anemia of Chronic Disease
rheumatoid arthritis p. 472
anemia of chronic disease p. 427
in anemia of chronic disease p. 427
anemia of chronic disease and p. 427
Anemia of chronic disease refers to a low red blood cell, or RBC, count that may be associated with many chronic disease states like infections, malignancy, diabetes, or autoimmune disorders. The disease used to be called anemia of chronic inflammation because the underlying cause anemia is the continuous inflammation generated by chronic disease, which impairs iron metabolism and, in turn, RBC production. The anemia itself is usually mild and it’s the second most common type of iron deficiency anemia.
RBCs are produced in the bone marrow, in response to erythropoietin - which is a molecule secreted by the kidneys in response to low levels of oxygen in the blood. Taking a closer look at our RBCs, we can see they’re loaded with millions of copies of the same exact protein called hemoglobin, which binds to oxygen and turns our RBCs into little oxygen transporters that move oxygen to all the tissues in our body. Zooming in even closer, each hemoglobin molecule is made up of four smaller heme molecules, which have iron right in the middle. Oxygen binds to the iron, so each hemoglobin molecule can bind four molecules of oxygen. In addition, iron is also an important part of proteins like myoglobin, which delivers and stores oxygen in muscles; and mitochondrial enzymes like cytochrome oxidase, which help generate ATP.
Now, we get the iron required for RBC production from our diet. Following breakdown of food in the stomach, iron is released as Fe2+ ions, and then it’s absorbed in the small intestine - specifically, the duodenum. Inside the duodenal cells, an enzyme called hephaestin oxidizes Fe2+ to Fe3+ ions. This form of iron binds to a protein called ferritin, which temporarily stores the iron. When iron is needed in the body, some iron molecules are released from ferritin and transported into the blood, where they bind to an iron transport protein called transferrin that carries iron to various target tissues and releases them there.
Now, the mechanisms that underlie anemia of chronic disease are complex and still under investigation. In general, the disease mechanism is a two fold process; decreased RBC lifespan and decreased RBC production.
Shortened RBC lifespan is a result of direct cellular destruction via toxins from cancer cells, viruses, or bacterial infections. Decreased RBC production is a bit more complex and involves several mechanisms.
Anemia of chronic disease (ACD) is a form of anemia that occurs in people with chronic medical conditions such as cancer, autoimmune diseases, and certain infections. ACD is caused by the body's inflammatory response to chronic illness, which can lead to iron deficiency. Symptoms of ACD include fatigue, weakness, and shortness of breath.
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