Anemia/Iron Deficiency in Florida
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What is anemia/iron deficiency?
Typically, anemia arises anytime an individual's blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells and thus is unable to deliver adequate oxygen to the body. Iron deficiency anemia is a common type of anemia caused when there is not enough iron in the body which inhibits it from making hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is a protein in the red blood cells that delivers oxygen. Without iron to aid in the production of hemoglobin, oxygen cannot be sufficiently distributed to the body. Anemia and iron deficiency could cause severe health concerns when they are not treated. You can receive treatment for anemia in Florida. If you believe you or a loved one might have anemia or iron deficiency then we encourage you to reach out to Gastroenterology Associates of Florida today.
What causes anemia/iron deficiency?
Iron deficiency anemia is the result of having below-normal amounts of iron in your blood. Iron is what equips the blood to make hemoglobin. A body's iron deficiency could be caused by a number of differing factors:
- Loss of blood (heavy menstruation, chronic blood loss, etc.)
- Intravascular hemolysis
- A lack of iron in one's diet
- A problem absorbing iron (your small intestine becomes compromised from a disease like Celiac disease)
- Being pregnant
Those at an increased risk for iron deficiency anemia can include:
- Those maintaining a vegetarian or vegan diet
- Those who donate blood
- Children and infants
- Biological women
If you or someone you love is at risk for iron deficiency, connect with a doctor at Gastroenterology Associates of Florida to ensure you do not suffer from anemia.
What are some symptoms of anemia/iron deficiency?
Low levels of oxygen cause a multitude of iron deficiency complications. The most typical symptoms of iron deficiency anemia can include:
- Craving for ice or clay (pagophagia)
- Lack of hunger
- Shortness of breath or pain in one's chest
- Rapid heartbeat
- Paleness of the skin
- Painful or smooth tongue
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Fatigue that has no apparent reason
- Brittle nails
- Loss of hair
- Lack of warmth in hands or feet
Iron deficiency anemia is not something you should self-diagnose, and supplementing with iron in pill form without a doctor's supervision might be harmful. Help is available for iron deficiency in Florida. See your doctor if you suffer from any combination of the above-listed symptoms with any frequency. If you or someone you love is suffering from these symptoms, we urge you to contact our GI providers at Gastroenterology Associates of Florida and ask about investigating the possibility of iron deficiency.
In what ways is anemia/iron deficiency treated?
Treatments for iron deficiency anemia are extremely simple and they aim to increase the amount of iron in one's body. However, several conditions and medications can interfere with the absorption of iron. The most traditional treatments for iron deficiency anemia are:
- Taking oral contraceptives to reduce bleeding during menstruation
- Taking iron tablets on an empty stomach
- Receiving treatment for diseases that impede absorption, such as Crohn's disease or Celiac disease
- Treatment for internal bleeding
- Taking iron supplements at the same time as vitamin C
- Taking antibiotics for treatment of peptic ulcers
- Increasing intake of foods rich in iron
- Swallowing iron tablets without antacids
Foods rich in iron:
- Dried fruit
- Leafy greens
- Red meat - Beef
Vitamin C-rich foods (to aid in iron absorption):
- Leafy greens
Complete treatment for anemia
Iron deficiency anemia can lead to dangerous medical problems if improperly handled. When the cells and tissues in one's major organs do not receive the amount of oxygen they need, they start to scar or become damaged. Also, with iron deficiency anemia, the heart can be overworked because it is trying to supply more blood to oxygen-deprived portions of the body. But our team offers care for iron deficiency anemia in Florida. Iron deficiency treatment may need two to three weeks to stop symptoms. Depending on why you were anemic in the first place, you might need to consume iron supplements for a long period of time to ensure that the anemia will not resurface. If you have received a diagnosis of, or suspect you might have, anemia we implore you to contact Gastroenterology Associates of Florida to ensure you get expert treatment for your condition.
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