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Hemolytic anemia
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Hemolytic anemia

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Contributors: Nina Haghi MD, Paritosh Prasad MD
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Synopsis

Hemolytic anemia is a condition in which red blood cells (RBCs) are consumed or destroyed faster than they can be produced by the bone marrow. Hemolytic anemias can be broken down into inherited conditions and acquired conditions.
  1. Inherited hemolytic anemias – Generally due to abnormal hemoglobin molecules as seen in sickle cell anemia or thalassemia, or due to abnormalities of the RBC membranes resulting in excess splenic sequestration.
  2. Acquired hemolytic anemias – These can be due to exposure to certain drugs, certain infections (bacterial or viral), autoimmune etiologies, hematologic malignancies, mechanical destruction (due to mechanical heart valves), or sequestration in the setting of hypersplenism.
Hemolytic anemias can also be categorized based on the primary location of destruction (intravascular or extravascular) and immune versus nonimmune etiologies.

Intravascular hemolysis occurs within the vessel due to either mechanical trauma (from damaged endothelium) or complement fixation / activation on cell surface, or from an infectious agent. Extravascular hemolysis occurs outside of blood vessels in the spleen or liver when RBCs are removed or destroyed due to membrane surface defects or surface antibodies. Autoantibodies that lead to extravascular hemolysis may be categorized as "warm" (usually immunoglobulin G [IgG] antibodies), which bind to RBCs at body temperature, or "cold" (usually IgM antibodies), which bind to RBCs at below body temperature, producing cold agglutinins (ie, cold agglutinin disease).

Specific types of hemolytic anemia have their own incidence, demographics, and unique risk factors.

Types of hemolytic anemias include but are not limited to:

Codes

ICD10CM:
D59.9 – Acquired hemolytic anemia, unspecified

SNOMEDCT:
61261009 – Hemolytic Anemia

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Diagnostic Pearls

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Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

Best Tests

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Management Pearls

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Therapy

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Drug Reaction Data

Below is a list of drugs with literature evidence indicating an adverse association with this diagnosis. The list is continually updated through ongoing research and new medication approvals. Click on Citations to sort by number of citations or click on Medication to sort the medications alphabetically.

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References

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Last Reviewed: 08/14/2019
Last Updated: 09/04/2019
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Hemolytic anemia
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Hemolytic anemia : Dark urine, Fatigue, Headache, Jaundice, Dyspnea, Pallor, RBC decreased
Copyright © 2019 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.