- Life span of an RBC is 120 days
- Three alterations in erythropoiesis may decrease RBC production:
- Decreased hemoglobin synthesis
- Defective DNA synthesis in RBCs
- Diminished availability of erythrocyte precursors
- Sickle cell disease has a high incidence among African Americans.
- Thalassemia has a high incidence among African Americans and people of Mediterranean origin.
- Tay-Sachs disease has the highest incidence in families of Eastern European Jewish origin, especially the Ashkenazi Jews.
- Pernicious anemia has a high incidence among Scandinavians and African Americans.
- Caused by body’s response to tissue hypoxia
- Manifestations vary based on rate of development, severity of anemia, presence of co-existing disease
- Hemoglobin (Hgb) levels are used to determine severity of anemia
- Decreased hemoglobin
- Decreased blood flow to the skin
- Increased concentration of serum bilirubin
- Increased serum and skin bile salt concentrations
- Result from additional attempts by heart and lungs to provide adequate O2 to tissues
- Cardiac output maintained by increasing heart rate and stroke volume