Pernicious anemia is a chronic illness brought on by the lack of RBC or red blood cells. Vitamin B12 is essential for the production of red blood cells. However, due to a shortage of intrinsic factor (a special kind of protein) in the gastric secretions, the intestines are unable to absorb vitamin B12 from the food that is consumed. Over a period of time a steady decrease in red blood cells can lead to general weakness and extreme exhaustion.
An Insight Into Pernicious Anemia
Addison’s anemia, Biermer’s anemia or pernicious anemia is a serious health condition that can affect the production of red blood cells. The red blood cells simultaneously transports oxygen from the lungs to the vital organs of the body and carbon dioxide from the major organs of the body back to the lungs. Adult pernicious anemia is caused by severe vitamin B12 deficiency due to parietal cell loss, atrophic gastritis and / or a deficiency of intrinsic factor.
Initially, pernicious anemia was deemed to be an incurable disease. However, all that has changed. Early diagnosis and treatment can guarantee successful treatment of pernicious anemia.
Ways to Treat Pernicious Anemia
There are numerous positive ways to treat pernicious anemia. Some popular options to treat vitamin B12 deficiency include taking vitamin B12 shots and eating a diet that is rich in this particular vitamin. Through this article we will examine the different ways to treat pernicious anemia.
Vitamin B-12 Shots
The best way to treat pernicious anemia is to take a course of vitamin B12 injections. The number of vitamin B-12 shots a person has to take will depend on the extent of his or her anemia.
For mild forms of pernicious anemia, an individual may have to take a course of vitamin B12 injection over a period of several months. However, for severe forms of pernicious anemia, a single monthly shot of vitamin B12 may have to be taken for the reminder of an individual’s life.
Oral / Intranasal Vitamin B12 Supplements
For mild to moderate kinds of pernicious anemia, oral vitamin B12 supplements are recommended. Vitamin B12 supplements can also be administered through intra-nasal route.
Eat Vitamin B12 Rich Diet
The best natural treatment option to overcome this chronic illness is to eat a diet that is rich in Vitamin B12. Sometimes a diet that is deficient in Vitamin B12 can also lead to pernicious anemia. Shellfish, poultry, dairy products and red meat are rich sources of vitamin B12. So make it a point to incorporate at least a few of these products into the daily diet plan.
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Regular Blood Tests
Individuals who are diagnosed with severe forms of pernicious anemia will have to get their blood tested at regular intervals. Regular blood tests are prescribed by doctors to determine whether the monthly vitamin B12 shots are having any positive effect on the individual with pernicious anemia or not.
If the monthly vitamin B12 shots are having only a marginal effect on the individual with pernicious anemia, the doctor will advise the patient to take vitamin B12 shots more frequently.
Determine Underlying Cause
It is important to determine the underlying cause of pernicious anemia. Lack of intrinsic factor and / or eating a diet that is deficient in vitamin B12 are just some of the factors which can cause pernicious anemia. Tapeworm infection, taking certain type of medications and even celiac disease can cause pernicious anemia. Removing sections of the small intestine during surgery can lead to pernicious anemia condition later on in life.
Once the underlying cause of pernicious anemia is determined, a doctor will prescribe specific treatment measures to overcome this debilitating condition.
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