aplastic_anemia

Aplastic Anemia is a serious medical condition that involves Bone Marrow.

In this condition the individual is unable to make enough red blood cells to replace the “old” or “damaged” Red Blood Cells (RBCs).

Aplasia” – means that it doesn’t properly function.

Anemia” – is a decrease of hemoglobin in the blood.

Typically the white blood cells, platelets, and red blood cells will be low when blood work is done.

If this disease is left untreated the results are very poor with death often within 6 months to 1 year.

Treatment is very helpful and the prognosis can be quite well.

Relapses are a concerning point to this condition however.

Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Malaise
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Low blood counts
  • Bruising
  • Prone to infection

Causes:

  • Autoimmune disease [white blood cells attack the bone marrow]
  • Exposure to toxins
  • Exposure to certain medications
  • Exposure to radiation
  • Acute viral hepatitis

Diagnosis

  • Blood work is helpful
  • Bone marrow biopsy is essential
  • X-ray or CT – may be helpful

Treatment

Immune system modulators

.   anti-thymocyte globulin  (ATG)
.   anti-lymphocyte globulin  (ALG)
.   cyclosporin

Chemotherapy agents

.   cyclophosphamide
.   vincristine

Bone marrow transplant – in severe cases

*** Marie Curie – was exposed to radiation for her scientific research died from aplastic anemia.

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