Sign & Symptoms of Anemia

Updated March 23, 2017

Anemia results when there are not enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to tissues. Anemia can be a permanent or temporary condition. There are different types of anaemia such as sickle cell, vitamin deficiency or aplastic anaemia. One of the main symptoms of anaemia is fatigue.

Common Symptoms

A patient may feel tired or weak if they are anaemic. They may also experience shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness, irregular heartbeat, pale skin, insomnia and cold hands and feet.

Iron-Deficiency Anemia

Individuals with an iron deficiency may experience a tingling sensation such as a "pins and needles" type of feeling. Other symptoms include clumsiness or having difficulty walking. Sometimes hallucinations or dementia can occur.

Red Blood Cell Destruction

A person who has red blood cell destruction may appear to have jaundice with yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes. Urine may also be brown or red. Symptoms may be similar to those who have gallstones, including abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting or a bloated feeling in the stomach.

Sickle Cell

Sickle cell anaemia is usually an inherited condition. In infants, symptoms may appear by 4 months of age. One of the first conditions to appear is pain that begins in the joints, chest and abdomen, but bone pain can occur, too. Episodes of pain may be severe and lead to hospitalisation. Other symptoms include swollen hands and feet, frequent infections, jaundice and delayed growth.

Vitamin Deficiency

Someone who lacks specific vitamins and nutrients to create red blood cells may develop anaemia. Some of the symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, diarrhoea, pale or yellow skin, sore mouth and tongue and irritability. Mental confusion, forgetfulness and unsteady movements can occur. Symptoms for this type of condition may appear slowly, but as the deficiency increases, the anaemia grows worse.

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About the Author

Ariana Cherry-Shearer began writing for the Web in 2006. Cherry-Shearer's work has appeared at websites such as GardenGuides, GolfLink and Trails. She also writes a weekly blog and has published collections of poetry. Cherry-Shearer earned a certificate in computer applications from Lakeland Community College.