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  • What kind of anemia is this?

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    Old 02-27-2006, 07:16 AM   #1
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    What kind of anemia is this?

    Hi everyone. In the past few years I have experienced extremely low hemoglobyn (sp?) and hematocryt (sp?) levels. I do have an undetermined autoimmune disease that is looking mostly like lupus and I'm on prednisone 5mg a day for lung problems. I've had major surgery to repair broken bones due to my severe osteoporosis and have always needed transfusions. I've got another one coming up in 2 weeks to get a hip replacement. I broke my right hip last May and I've been without one since then. I've had so many surgeries that I'm considered a "super transfuser" with antibodies. The hospital often finds it very difficult to find donor blood for me during surgery. Anyway, considering that background, my primary care physician sent me to a hematologyst. She said that I don't have anemia that is caused by iron deficiency and that I shouldn't take iron supplements at all. She could only explain my anemia as my body's inability to make enough red blood cells. She put me on Procrit and it has helped me as long as I take my shot about every 2 to 3 weeks. Thank goodness for my pharmacy insurance!! Procrit is very, very expensive. I'll go to the lab every 2 weeks for a blood test and then I call to get my results. The nurse then tells me if I shoud take my Procrit or not. Sometimes I can go 3 weeks between shots. This month I needed 2 shots in a row. When my numbers (H&H) are low my symptoms include extreme fatigue, feeling faint when I stand up suddenly and everything in the middle of my sight line goes black - like a total eclipse of the sun. This also happens when I'm on the toilet and I'm contracting my muscles to have a bowel movement. Not all the time, but if I have to give anything other than just mild pushing, I get the same feeling of being faint and seeing the "blackout" in my vision. Also, when my numbers are low I always feel cold. Can anybody relate to my symptoms and, if so, what kind of anemia could this be? Thanks for any information you can provide. I absolutely hate feeling like this! KathyMac

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    Old 02-27-2006, 09:15 AM   #2
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    Re: What kind of anemia is this?

    The symptoms you describe sound like low blood volume and dehydration. The iron problem sounds like hemolytic anemia, or anemia of chronic disease, with the osteoporosis being so severe. I don't know why your hematologist would not have told you this information unless they were not sure of the diagnosis. I am not a doctor and am only going on the information you have given here.

    Old 02-27-2006, 09:44 AM   #3
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    Re: What kind of anemia is this?

    I agree with Merimac. I suffer from Hemolytic Anemia and although your symptoms sound familiar there's just so many different reasons for anemia and just as many types. Suggest you go to the blood disorders thread as there are many chronic anemia sufferers there. Be careful not to try to diagnose yourself. Blood tests have to be evaluated by a qualified doctor as no one test result tells the whole story. Your hematologist should run all the necessary blood tests though and be able to tell you exactly what's wrong. I would ask your hemo doc exactly what's wrong with you and for a prognosis. If you don't get the answers you're looking for you may want to try another hemo doc. I don't like my hemotologist at all, but he's a brilliant doctor and he does tell me the facts and that's what I rely on.
    I hope you're feeling better soon.


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