Anemia is defined as a low hemoglobin concentration/ may be due to either low red cell mass/ increased plasma volume. Low Hb is <13.5 g/dL for men and <11.5g/dL for women. It can be due to reduced RBCs production/ loss of RBCs due to several causes. Some forms of anemia include aplastic anemia/ folic acid deficiency anemia/ hemolytic anemia/ sickle cell anemia.
According to the Ayurveda concept, Anemia is generally known as Pandu Roga. It is due to less amount of blood( rakta-alpata). Pandu is considered as Rakta Pradoshaja Vikara. In this case, the patient skin color changes to shveta peet(pandu varna).
Pandu ( Anaemia) according to Acharya Charak is mainly classified into five types:-
5) Mridu Bhakshan Janya
If signs and symptoms appear for a long-duration / some of the following symptoms appear, then you should consult doctor as soon as possible :
Q.1 What are the reference ranges of Hb in adults and children?
Ans- Reference ranges are -
Q.2 Is it normal to have Hb value high?
Ans- No, it's not to be normal while having high Hb values. High Hb values occur when the body requires an increased Oxygen carrying capacity. It may result in polycythemia/ Heart diseases/ COPD/ emphysema/ heart failure/ kidney Cancer/ liver cancer/ dehydration/ etc.
Q.3 What are the causes of High Hb values?
Ans- Many factors and various causes are associated with high Hb values like -
Q.4 What sign does eyelid color shows when anemia occur?
Ans- ‘Conjunctival pallor’ is the classic sign of anemia. The pallor refers to the vasculature on the inner surface of the lid lacking Hb conc. It is usually caused by a reduction in blood flow and oxygen / by decreased no. Of RBCs.
Q.5 What are the classifications of Anemia?
Ans- Anemia is generally classified by two methods:-
1) Morphological - It mainly depends upon the size and color RBC. It includes:-
2) Etiological - Depends on cause/ origin, it includes -
Q.6 What happens when Hb value gets lower in Pregnant women? How can it overcome?
Ans- Hb value gets lower due to insufficiency of RBCs to carry oxygen to tissues. During pregnancy, as a growing fetus also requires oxygen and blood supply, so, it is important to increase iron supplements and dietary intake. Hb low value in pregnancy leads to weakness/ fatigue/ pale/yellowish skin/ breathing shortness/ chest pain/ cold hands and feet/ headaches.
Q.7 What are the various dietary intake to come over the deficiency of Anemia?
Ans- Various dietary intake includes:-
- consumption of fortified foods.
- vitamin A-rich foods/folic acid/ vitamin B-12/ Iron-rich supplements and food in the diet
- Foods that rich in vitamin-c ( fruits/tuber/ green leafy vegetables) should be consumed at mealtimes.
- Vitamin B-12 rich animal products
- Folic acid rich legumes.
- beta-carotene/ vitamin A-rich foods
- restrict consumption of tea/coffee/ cocoa between meals/ 1 hr after meals, since it inhibits iron absorption.
- avoid intake of milk/ milk-related products at meals as calcium in milk inhibits iron absorption.
Q.8 How the deficiency of Iron affect the Nervous and Endocrine system?
Ans- It alters the production of Triiodothyronine ( T3) and thyroid function in general, production of catecholamines and other neurotransmitters, it results in impaired temperature response to a cold environment.
Q.9 Where Folate is found and what are the causes of its deficiency?
Ans- It is found in green vegetables, nuts, yeast & liver/ synthesized by gut bacteria. Causes of its deficiency include poor diet e.g. poverty, alcoholics, elderly/ increased demand, e.g. pregnancy/ increase cell turnover/
Malabsorption/ drugs/alcohol/ antiepileptics etc.
Q.10 What kind of treatment is available in Ayurveda for Anemia?
Ans- In Ayurveda medicine, treatment generally includes Nidaan Parivarjan, Samshodhana chikitsa( nidan parivarjan, aabhyantar snehana, tikshana samshodhan with vamana or virechana,raktabasti, Samshamana chikitsa includes rasa, virya ayurveda drug formulations according to vata/pitta/kaphaja/sannipataja prakritis.
1. Longmore, Wilkinson, Davidson, Foulkes, Mafi, Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine 8th Edition.
2. Kayachikitsa Volume-2 by Prof. Ajay Kumar Sharma (2017)
3. Charak Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana - ch-16
4. Madhava Nidana, Ch-8
5. J.Alastair Innes, Davidson’s Essential of Medicine 2nd edition
6. K Sembulingam, P Sembulingam, Essentials of Medical Physiology 6th Edition.
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