Our blood is a very vital component in our body’s survival. The blood acts as a medium of transportation for all the nutrients and essential substances that our cells and tissues in the body needs. Without blood, our systems will not be able to function properly causing problems in health that can possibly lead to complications and even death. Aside from this, the blood can experience different problems and abnormalities with its components. The blood is made up of different cells that aid in delivering the needed nutrients as well as in promoting the immunity of the body. One of these cells is known as the red blood cell or the RBC. Nevertheless, the RBC can also have specific problems or irregularities. One of these is known as the normocytic anemia. So what is this kind of condition and what are the different normocytic anemia causes?
Defining Normocytic Anemia
Normocytic anemia is a type of blood disorder that is usually characterized by red blood cells that are normal in size but are insufficient in quantities. This disorder is often associated with chronic diseases, blood loss or hemorrhage, bone marrow problems or irregularities and as well as kidney function alterations. This can also be a result from an inherited condition, which considers the disorder as a hereditary problem.
Anemia is defined as the disorder whenever there is a decrease of circulating RBC mass that is already below the age and gender specific minimum limits. There are actually different kinds of anemia; however, it is the normocytic anemia that is considered to be one of the most common. This type of anemia shows an insufficient quantity of RBC in the blood. However, the shape, structure and the condition of the remaining red blood cells are considered to be normal. In other words, the mean corpuscular volume or MCV is within the defined normal limits, but the hemoglobin and the hematocrit of the blood is decreased. This can also be congenital, which means that a person can be born already having this kind of condition or is acquired to some kind of disease or infection. If the normocytic anemia is considered congenital, then the primary problem of the condition is the breakdown of the RBCs in the blood.
In case this condition is being suspected, then it is necessary to undergo diagnostic examinations such as the routine blood tests of the CBC or Complete Blood Count. The CBC can indicate whether the size of the red blood cells is normal as well as its number. In case this examination reveals normal size but low in quantity, then it can suggest normocytic anemia. Since the condition is possibly inherited, family members of the patient must also have their blood components checked with CBC as early as possible.
However, if the condition is caused by a certain chronic disease, then it is a must to cure or correct first the disease in order to treat the resulting anemia. In most severe cases of normocytic anemia, the use of the drug called erythropoietin is already prescribed or recommended, which can help or influence the bone marrow in producing more red blood cells in the body. Statistics show that about 44% of men older than 85 years old have this kind of anemia. In addition to this finding, anemia from chronic diseases is so common that it affects approximately 6% of the total hospitalized adult patients. In America, there are already 4.7 million people who suffer from this kind of anemia.
Facts about Normocytic Anemia
Normocytic anemia is also common among children. However, in this kind of anemia in children is most commonly caused by the deficiency of iron and as well as led toxicity. Aside from this, blood loss or acute bleeding is also capable of causing normocytic anemia in children. Other types of anemia can also lead to normocytic anemia such as sickle cell anemia. RBC membrane disorders and certain types of infections can also contribute to the occurrence of normocytic anemia in children.
In treating this kind of condition, it is important to have early detection in order to provide fast and immediate treatment to the disease. A key to the treatment of normocytic anemia is a timely identification of the possible causes. Most treatments or interventions vary depending on the type of chronic disease that is attached to anemia. Anemia of chronic disease is considered the most common normocytic anemia and the second most common form of anemia around the world.
Some of the common symptoms of normocytic anemia include loss of appetite, pale lips, brittleness of the nails, soreness of the mouth and pale eyelids. These symptoms also depend on the underlying cause of the condition. Nevertheless, if at least 2 or more of these symptoms are already experienced by the body, it is already recommended to seek immediate medical help in order to provide fast and appropriate management to the current health situation. These are just some of the important details and facts with regards to the condition known as normocytic anemia.