Approach to Anemia: Learning Objectives
Medical ImportanceAnemia is one of the most common problems encountered in clinical practice. Making a diagnosis of "anemia" is never sufficient. The cause of the anemia must always be determined; in some cases, the cause is a potentially life-threatening condition. Examination of the blood allows us to identify a problem and generate a list of possible causes, if not actually give the diagnosis outright.
- Identify the typical hemoglobin levels that define anemia in children/adolescents and post-pubertal men and women.
- List the signs and symptoms of anemia and distinguish between the symptoms of acute anemia with volume depletion and chronic anemia in the euvolemic state.
- Classify anemias according to the mean corpuscular volume.
- Classify anemias according to the reticulocyte count.
- List and describe the other laboratory examinations that can assist one in determining the etiology of the anemia.
- List factors that impair the normal reticulocyte response to anemia.
- Identify structural red cell abnormalities on a peripheral blood smear and to describe their clinical association