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Case Study #1 - Essay Example

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The early signs include pagophagia and leg cramps when a patient tries to engage in a physically tasking activity (Beard, 2001)…
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Case Study #1

Iron deficiency anemia is characterized by abnormalities in hemoglobin synthesis leading to small red blood cells that have had a little hemoglobin. The reduced hemoglobin negatively affects the cells effectiveness in carrying oxygen to various body parts. According to Cook (2002), adolescents are highly predisposed to anemia because of body requirements to support rapid growth. Females lose an average of 20mg of iron every month during menstruation and thus require high iron content to maintain normal body functioning.
Symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, dizziness, lethargy, shortness of breath, restless leg syndrome, brittle nails, blue sclera, pale conjunctivae, glossitis and pica. Depending on its severity, iron deficiency has several consequences for patients. Decreased physical activity , diminishing endurance, abnormal temperature regulation, vulnerability to infections, compromised growth and development, increased lead and cadmium absorption hence a high probability of lead poisoning, pregnancy complications like premature birth and growth retardation of the fetus.
Although there is no specific test to indicate iron deficiency in anemic patients, tests of iron status can be used to determine whether an individual has sufficient iron or not. For instance, hemoglobin tests are used to determine the level of iron-containing protein in red blood cells. Hematrocit indicates the percentage of red blood cells in the blood. Thus, use of the hemoglobin test is more direct and efficient in diagnosing iron deficiency in individuals. When the erythrocyte count is less than 2%, it shows that the blood has insufficient reticulocyte to enable the bone marrow to replace the worn out hemoglobin hence leading to deficiencies. The presence of hypochromic microcytic red blood cells in a blood smear is an indication of a deficiency in hemoglobin synthesis (Beard, 2001).
Shortness of breath can be attributed to a reduced oxygen supply to ... Read More
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