Case Study 1
Ms. A. is an apparently healthy 26-year-old white woman. Since the beginning of the current golf season, Ms. A has noted increased shortness of breath and low levels of energy and enthusiasm. These symptoms seem worse during her menses. Today, while playing in a golf tournament at a high, mountainous course, she became light-headed and was taken by her golfing partner to the emergency clinic. The attending physician’s notes indicated a temperature of 98 degrees F, an elevated heart rate and respiratory rate, and low blood pressure. Ms. A states, “Menorrhagia and dysmenorrheal have been a problem for 10-12 years, and I take 1,000 mg of aspirin every 3 to 4 hours for 6 days during menstruation.” During the summer months, while playing golf, she also takes aspirin to avoid “stiffness in my joints.”
Laboratory values are as follows:
Hemoglobin = 8 g/dl
Hematocrit = 32%
Erythrocyte count = 3.1 x 10/mm
RBC smear showed microcytic and hypochromic cells
Reticulocyte count = 1.5%
Other laboratory values were within normal limits.
Considering the circumstances and the preliminary workup, what type of anemia does Ms. A most likely have? In an essay of 500-750 words, explain your answer and include rationale.
the question is at end of the case study
The prevalence of anemia has become a significant global problem. Studies have shown that it affects about 1.62 billion people across the world and is among the leading causes of increased hospitalization and high mortality rates (WHO, 2015). Anemia can be defined as a blood condition that occurs as a result of insufficient hemoglobin or healthy red blood cells. The ailment is caused by various factors including excessive blood loss, faulty red blood cell production, and the destruction of the red blood cells (Tyler & Cowell, 2013). Anemia can be classified into different categories including iron deficiency, sickle cell, and hemolytic anemia, just to mention a few (WHO, 2015). This paper discusses the type of anemia that Ms. A is suffering from given the the preliminary workup and circumstances identified in the case study.
Based on the preliminary workup, symptoms, and circumstances identified in the case study, M.s A is suffering from iron deficiency anemia. The disease occurs as a result of lack iron in the blood (Liu& Kaffes, 2012). In this regard, studies have pointed out that iron deficiency anemia is common in women and children. It is often caused by a number of factors including insufficient dietary intake, blood loss, and poor absorption of iron (WHO, 2015). Some of the symptoms commonly associated with the condition include increased shortness of breath, fatigue, rapid heartbeat, and general weakness, just to mention (Lopez et al., 2016). Treatment is often determined by the severity of the disease. However, iron deficiency anemia can be managed through dietary changes, iron supplements, and blood transfusion in severe cases.
Iron deficiency anemia can be diagnosed through a number of tests. For instance, a complete blood test must be conducted to analyze and measure the red and white blood cells, hemoglobin levels, platelets, and hematocrit (Tyler & Cowell, 2013). In this regard, a low hematocrit range and hemoglobin level is a sign of iron deficiency anemia. Similarly a blood smear of a person with the disease in question will show hypochromic and microcytic cells as observed in Ms. A’s case (Lopez et al., 2016). That is to say, iron deficiency anemia is usually characterized by hypochromic erythrocytes, microcytic, and low iron stores (Liu& Kaffes, 2012). Other tests may include reticulocyte count, peripheral smear, and serum iron indices. A low reticulocyte count and serum iron indices is another symptom of iron deficiency anemia. It is in the light of this context that Ms. A could be suffering from iron deficiency anemia which can be managed through dietary changes and medication.
In conclusion, anemia is among the leading causes of high mortality rates and increased hospitalization in many clinical settings. The disease is classified into different forms including iron deficiency, sickle cell, and hemolytic anemia. Studies have shown that iron deficiency anemia is prevalent among women and children. Some of the causes of iron deficiency anemia include insufficient dietary intake, blood loss, and poor absorption of iron. The condition can be diagnosed through a number of tests including a complete blood test, a peripheral smear, reticulocyte count, and serum iron indices. In this regard, a low reticulocyte count, serum iron indices, hematocrit range, and hemoglobin level is a sign of iron deficiency anemia. Similarly, the ailment is characterized with hypochromic erythrocytes, microcytic, and low iron stores as observed in Ms. A’s case. Iron deficiency anemia can, however, be managed though dietary changes, medication, or blood transfusion in severe cases.
Liu, K., & Kaffes, A. J. (2012). Iron deficiency anaemia: a review of diagnosis, investigation and management. European journal of gastroenterology & hepatology, 24(2), 109-116.
Lopez, A., Cacoub, P., Macdougall, I. C., & Peyrin-Biroulet, L. (2016). Iron deficiency anaemia. The Lancet, 387(10021), 907-916.
Tyler, R. D., & Cowell, R. L. (2013). Classification and diagnosis of anaemia. Comparative Haematology International, 6(1), 1-16.
World Health Organization. (2015). Haemoglobin concentrations for the diagnosis of anaemia and assessment of severity. 2011. Geneva: WHO Google Scholar.