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What is severe anemia?

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Quick Answer

Anemia is a condition that develops when blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells. Anemia is the most common blood condition in America, with an estimated 3.5 million people suffering from it. There are many different types of anemia, and the causes vary with each type, according to WebMD.

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What is severe anemia?
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Full Answer

There are more than 400 types of anemia, but those types are broken down into three categories: anemia from blood loss, anemia caused by decreased red blood cell production and anemia caused by destruction of red blood cells. Treating and curing anemia is based on the type of anemia and the underlying cause of that anemia. The most common form of anemia is iron-deficiency anemia, which is caused by having less iron in the body than it needs to function properly. The symptoms of this include fatigue, weakness, pale skin, an irregular heartbeat and dizziness. Iron-deficiency anemia is treated with dietary changes and iron supplements, according to WebMD.

Most forms of anemia can be treated with either lifestyle changes or medication. In the most severe cases, hospitalization is necessary until the patient has stabilized enough to be treated at home. Some forms or anemia, such as sickle-cell anemia, require ongoing treatment, reports WebMD.

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