Major Disorders Affecting Red Blood Cells

Blood disorders can drastically affect your overall health condition and body. These disorders can affect any of the three main components of the blood; red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets. Based on the type of blood in your body these blood disorders can be treated. Red blood cells transmit oxygen to the various tissues of your body and any disorder of these cells can affect your body seriously.

major disorders affecting red blood cells

Given below are some common disorders associated with red blood cell:

1. Anemia

This is a condition when there is a lack of number of red blood cells in your body. Although a mild anemia causes no severe symptoms, a more severe condition of anemia can cause pale skin, shortness of breath and fatigue.

2. Iron Deficiency Anemia

Deficiency of iron intake and heavy loss of blood in periods are the major reasons of iron-deficiency anemia. Iron is necessary for the body to produce red blood cells. Loosing blood from GI tract due to cancer or ulcers may also lead to this condition.

3. Anemia of Chronic Illness

Several chronic diseases like kidney problems may lead to subsequent anemia. There is no specific treatment for this type of anemia, yet sometimes hormone injections of epoetin alfa to enhance the production of red blood cells, or transfusion of blood is necessary for people with this condition.

4. Pernicious Anemia

This health condition is caused due to an autoimmune condition or a damaged stomach lining. This disease stops the body from absorbing necessary nutrient B12 from food.

5. Aplastic Anemia

Aplastic anemia can be caused due to a viral infection, an autoimmune condition or a drug side effect. In people with aplastic anemia, the bone marrow is unable to generate sufficient blood cells including red blood cells. Blood transfusions, bone marrow transplant and various medications are used to treat this condition.

6. Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia

This condition is caused due to an overactive immune system, which abolishes your body’s own red blood cells and causes anemia. Medications for suppressing body’s immunity may be required to cure this condition.

7. Sickle Cell Anemia

People with this condition have red blood cells in a rigid and curved shape due to a genetic mutation. Usually a normal red blood cell is shaped similar to a disc, but people suffering from sickle cell anemia have molecules of haemoglobin which are abnormal. This causes the red blood cells to be shaped like a sickle, and hence this condition draws its name from the unusual shape of blood cells.

This condition is largely found among African Americans, although people from other regions are also affected. The sickle shaped cells are not able to carry necessary oxygen to body tissues and they may also block your blood flow by sticking in blood vessels. It is normally a hereditary illness which passes from parents to children.

8. Polycythemia Vera

During this problem there is excess production of red blood cells in the body which may cause blood clots  at times.

9. Malaria

It is a blood infection caused due to mosquito’s bite, which makes the blood cells split and further leads to fever, chills and organ damage.

All the above conditions can be treated and the medication should be started as soon as possible to check further deterioration.