Assignment: NURS 6521N – Anemia Pathophysiology
Anemia is a condition that develops when your blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells or hemoglobin (Huether & McCance, 2015). Hemoglobin is a main part of red blood cells and binds oxygen. If there are too few or abnormal red blood cells, or the hemoglobin level is abnormal or low, the cells in your body will get enough oxygen. Symptoms of anemia occur because organs aren’t getting what they need to function properly.
Pernicious anemia is one of the vitamin B-12 deficiency anemia. It’s caused by an ability to absorb the vitamin B-12 needed for your body to make enough healthy red blood cells. Vitamin B-12 is a nutrient found in some foods. Individuals who have pernicious anemia can’t absorb enough vitamin B-12 from food. It is a megaloblastic anemia resulting from vitamin B-12 deficiency due to lack of intrinsic factor (Toh, 2017). The body needs this nutrient to make healthy red blood cells and to keep its nervous system working properly. When there is a deficit in vitamin B-12, the blood cells don’t divide normally and are too large.
This may cause the red blood cells difficulty with getting out of the bone marrow. When there are not enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to the body, the individual may feel tired and weak. In pernicious anemia, vitamin B-12 is unavailable due to a lack of intrinsic factor. Intrinsic factor is produced by the parietal cells of the stomach and is responsible for intestinal absorption of the vitamin. Intrinsic factor forms a complex with dietary vitamin B-12 in the stomach.
The complex remains intact, preventing degradation of the vitamin by intestinal juices, until it reaches the ileum of the small intestine, where the vitamin is released and absorbed into the body. When intrinsic factor is prevented from binding with vitamin B-12 or when the parietal cells are unable to produce intrinsic factor, the vitamin is not absorbed and pernicious anemia results.
NURS 6521N – Anemia Pathophysiology
This effect is thought to stem from an autoimmune reaction in which the malfunctioning immune system produces antibodies against intrinsic factor and against the parietal cells. Pernicious anemia occurs most often in persons over age 30, although a juvenile form of the disease does occur, usually in children younger than 3 years old. The disease shows a familial tendency and is more common in individuals of northern European descent (Pavord, Myers, Allard & Strong, 2012).
Treatment involves a monthly intramuscular injection of vitamin B-12 that must be continued for life.
Iron Deficiency Anemia
Iron deficiency is the most common type of anemia, and it occurs you’re your body has a deficit of the mineral, iron. Iron is an important mineral because the body requires it to make hemoglobin (Cafasso & Nall, 2017). When there is not enough iron in the blood stream, the rest of the body cannot get the amount of oxygen it needs.
Iron-restricted erythropoiesis indicates that the delivery of iron to erythroid precursors is impaired, no matter how replete the stores (Weiss, 2005). Functional iron deficiency is a state of iron-poor erythropoiesis in which there is insufficient mobilization of iron from stores in the presence of increased demands, as is observed after treatment with erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (Thomas, Hinchliffe, Briggs, Macdougall, Littlewood, & Cavill, 2013).
Inadequate dietary iron, impaired iron absorption, bleeding, or loss of body iron in the urine may be the cause (Hempel & Bollard, 2016). Dietary habits may also be a contributing factor. In women of childbearing age, the most common cause of iron deficiency anemia is a loss of iron in the blood due to heavy menstruation or pregnancy. A poor diet or certain intestinal diseases that affect how the body absorbs iron can also cause iron deficiency anemia.
Doctors normally treat the condition with iron supplements or changes to diet.
Cafasso, J., & Nall, R. (2017). Iron Deficiency Anemia. Healthline. Retrieved October 9, 2018.
Hempel EV, Bollard ER. The Evidence-Based Evaluation of Iron Deficiency Anemia. Med Clin North Am. 2016 Sep. 100 (5):1065-75.
McCance, K. L., & Huether, S. E. (2015). Pathophysiology: The biologic basis for disease in adults and children (6th ed.). Maryland Hieghts, Mo.: Mosby Elsevier.
Pavord S, Myers B, Robinson S, Allard S, Strong J, UK guidelines on the management of iron deficiency in pregnancy. Br J Haematol 2012;156:588-600
Toh BH. Pathophysiology and laboratory diagnosis of pernicious anemia. Immunol Res. 2017 Feb. 65 (1):326-330.
Weiss G, Goodnough LT. Anemia of chronic disease. N Engl J Med 2005;352:1011-1023
NURS 6521N – Anemia Pathophysiology
Important information for writing discussion questions and participation
Please read through the following information on writing a Discussion question response and participation posts.
Contact me if you have any questions.
Important information on Writing a Discussion Question
- Your response needs to be a minimum of 150 words (not including your list of references)
- There needs to be at least TWO references with ONE being a peer reviewed professional journal article.
- Include in-text citations in your response
- Do not include quotes—instead summarize and paraphrase the information
- Follow APA-7th edition
- Points will be deducted if the above is not followed
Participation –replies to your classmates or instructor
- A minimum of 6 responses per week, on at least 3 days of the week.
- Each response needs at least ONE reference with citations—best if it is a peer reviewed journal article
- Each response needs to be at least 75 words in length (does not include your list of references)
- Responses need to be substantive by bringing information to the discussion or further enhance the discussion. Responses of “I agree” or “great post” does not count for the word count.
- Follow APA 7th edition
- Points will be deducted if the above is not followed
- Remember to use and follow APA-7th edition for all weekly assignments, discussion questions, and participation points.
- Here are some helpful links
- Student paper example
- Citing Sources
- The Writing Center is a great resource
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