The clinical approach to anaemia

see The pathophysiological approach to anaemia

REMEMBER: confirm the diagnosis, assess for the cause, determine severity and complications

Assess the chronicity of the symptoms

> Iron deficiency is the commonest chronic cause in a previously well patient - and GI loss is the commonest site (inadequate dietary iron is rare in Western countries)

Assess for causes of chronic blood loss

Assess for clotting disorder (consider this for any spontaneous bleeding)

Assess for malabsorptive or nutritional

Assess for haemoglobinopathy

Assess for haemolysis

Assess for bone marrow depression

Determine severity

Analyse RBC indices and investigate accordingly


REMEMBER: treat the symptoms, treat the problem, treat the cause and treat or prevent further complication.