Lege Artis Medicinae

[Anaemia of chronic disease: causes and therapeutic options]

EGYED Miklós

APRIL 01, 2009

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2009;19(03)

[Anemia observed in patients with infectious, inflammatory, or neoplastic diseases and persisting for more than one month is called anemia of chronic disease. The term anemia of chronic disease is far from perfect, the terms of anemia of inflammation, cytokine-mediated anemia, and anemia of defective iron reuse are also used. Anemia of chronic disease is more common than any other anemia syndrome - apart from anemia caused by iron deficiency secondary to blood loss. Erythrocytes usually are normocytic, but hypochromia and microcytosis may also be observed. In almost every case, this type of anemia is hypo-regenerative. Characteristic laboratory findings include hypoferremia, hyperferritinemia, and hypotransferrinemia. Cause of this anemia is complex; pathogenesis of this anemia includes moderate shortening of erythrocyte survival, blunted response to erythropoietin, reduced medullar erythropoiesis, and limited medullar iron availability. In addition to treating the underlying pathology, treatment opportunities are recombinant human erythropoietin, transfusions, and intravenous iron.]

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