Iron Deficiency Anemia (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Mild iron deficiency anemia may not cause noticeable symptoms. If anemia is severe, symptoms may include:
Other signs may include:
Babies and small children with iron deficiency anemia may not grow as expected and may have delays in skills such as walking and talking. Children may be irritable and have a short attention span. These problems usually go away when the deficiency is treated. If it is not treated, mental and behavior problems may be permanent.
Exams and Tests
If your doctor suspects iron deficiency anemia, he or she will do a physical exam and ask about your symptoms and your medical history. Your doctor will want to know about:
Your doctor will recommend tests to check for low iron levels and anemia. Possible tests include:
If your doctor suspects that bleeding in your stomach or intestines is causing your anemia, you will have tests to determine the cause of the bleeding. These may include:
If blood tests don't find the problem, you may need a test called a bone marrow aspiration. Bone marrow aspiration removes a small amount of bone marrow fluid through a needle inserted into the bone. Because iron is stored in the bone marrow, this test can provide a good idea of how much iron is in the body. But bone marrow aspirations are not done very often.
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