Anemia/Iron Deficiency in Connecticut

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What is anemia/iron deficiency?

Typically, anemia develops anytime your blood lacks a sufficient amount of healthy red blood cells and thus is unable to deliver adequate oxygen to the body. Iron deficiency anemia is a commonly seen type of anemia caused by insufficient iron in your body, which disables it from making hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is a protein in the red blood cells that carries oxygen. Without iron to produce hemoglobin, oxygen cannot be correctly spread throughout the body. Anemia and iron deficiency can cause dangerous health concerns if left untreated. You can receive treatment for anemia in Connecticut. If you suspect this condition, please contact your nearest Connecticut GI location today.

What are the causes of anemia/iron deficiency?

A lack of iron in your blood causes iron deficiency anemia. Iron is the substance that allows the blood to produce hemoglobin. This iron deficiency might be precipitated by a few unique circumstances:

  • A lack of iron in your diet
  • An inability to absorb iron (the small intestine may become compromised from a disease such as celiac disease)
  • Being pregnant
  • Intravascular hemolysis
  • Blood loss (chronic blood loss)

Those at an increased risk for iron deficiency anemia may include:

  • Participants in blood donation
  • Children and infants
  • Vegetarians/vegans
  • Females

If you are at risk for iron deficiency, reach out to a Connecticut GI specialist to ensure that anemia does not become an issue.

What are the symptoms of anemia/iron deficiency?

Insufficient levels of oxygen result in a multitude of iron deficiency concerns. The most common symptoms of iron deficiency anemia may include:

  • Loss of hair
  • Lack of warmth in hands or feet
  • Fatigue that has no apparent reason
  • A lack of color to the skin
  • Nails that break easily
  • Headache
  • The feeling of being weak
  • Loss of appetite
  • Shortness of breath or pain in one's chest
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Painful or smooth tongue
  • Craving for ice or clay (pagophagia)
  • Fast heartbeat (tachycardia)

Iron deficiency anemia should never be self-diagnosed, and supplementing with iron in pill form without a doctor's supervision could be harmful. Help is available for iron deficiency in Connecticut. See a GI provider if you are suffering from any combination of the above symptoms consistently. If you are suffering from these symptoms, we encourage you to reach out to a local Connecticut GI team and let them know you suspect the possibility of iron deficiency.

In what ways is anemia/iron deficiency treated?

The treatments for iron deficiency anemia are extremely simple, and their goal is to increase the amount of iron in the body. However, some other conditions and/or medications could interrupt the absorption of iron. The most frequently used treatments for iron deficiency anemia are:

  • Undergoing treatment for diseases that impede absorption, such as Celiac disease or Crohn’s disease
  • Antibiotics to treat peptic ulcers
  • Increasing intake of foods rich in iron
  • Taking oral contraceptives for reduction of bleeding during menstruation
  • Taking iron tablets without antacids
  • Surgery or treatment for internal bleeding
  • Swallowing iron tablets on an empty stomach
  • Taking iron supplements at the same time as vitamin C

Foods rich in iron:

  • Red meat - Beef
  • Leafy greens
  • Legumes
  • Poultry
  • Beans
  • Dried fruit
  • Pork
  • Seafood

Foods rich in vitamin C (to help with iron absorption):

  • Melons
  • Leafy greens
  • Kiwi
  • Tomatoes
  • Grapefruit
  • Oranges
  • Broccoli
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Comprehensive treatment for anemia

Iron deficiency anemia can cause dangerous health problems if ignored. If the cells and tissues in your major organs are not provided with the supply of oxygen they require, they begin to suffer damage or scarring. It is also important to note that in cases of iron deficiency anemia, the heart can be damaged due to its attempts to supply more blood to oxygen-deprived sections of the body. Our team offers care for iron deficiency anemia in Connecticut. Iron deficiency treatment could need two to three weeks to halt symptoms. Depending on the initial cause of your anemia, you may need to take iron supplements for an extensive amount of time to make certain that the anemia does not resurface. If you or a family member has received a diagnosis of, or suspects, anemia, we implore you to reach out to a Connecticut GI in your community to ensure you receive the best care for your needs.

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