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Anemia

Jessica Taff, MD -  - Oncologist

Coastal Hematology & Oncology Center

Jessica Taff, MD

Oncologist & Hematologist located in Toms River, NJ & Forked River, NJ

Anemia is a common blood disorder that affects as many as 3 million Americans. Jessica Taff, MD, of Coastal Hematology & Oncology Center, located in Toms River and Forked River, New Jersey, understands the complexity of an anemia diagnosis, and strives to help her patients find relief from the symptoms of anemia. Learn more during a face-to-face consultation, which you can book online or by phone today.

Anemia Q & A

What is anemia?

The term anemia describes a condition in which you have decreased red blood cells, which work to transport oxygen throughout the body. 

Anyone can develop anemia, including men, women, and children of all ages. The condition is most common in women who are menstruating and people with certain chronic health conditions, and there are multiple causes including issues with red blood cell production, function, and destruction.

What are the types of anemia?

There are many forms of anemia, and understanding which type you have is a key part of crafting a customized treatment plan. 

Iron-deficiency anemia

This is the most common type of anemia and develops when you lack sufficient iron in your blood. Pregnancy, childbirth, blood loss, and decreased dietary iron can cause this condition, as can problems with how your body absorbs iron. 

Aplastic anemia

This type of anemia is rare and occurs when your bone marrow stops producing sufficient red blood cells because of an autoimmune condition. Additional causes include ionizing radiation, viral infections, and exposure to drugs or toxic chemicals. 

Vitamin-deficiency anemia 

This type of anemia develops because of low levels of vitamin B12 or folic acid. It can happen because of a nutrient-poor diet or an inability to absorb B12 in your digestive tract.

Hemolytic anemia

This form of anemia occurs when your red blood cells are broken apart in your spleen or bloodstream. Congenital abnormalities, infections, biomechanical problems, and autoimmune disorders can cause hemolytic anemia. 

Some cases of anemia develop because of an underlying disease. Many medical conditions can interfere with normal red blood cell production. 

Dr. Taff begins by determining the type and cause of your anemia. This information allows her to create a treatment plan that suits your specific set of needs. 

How is anemia treated?

If your anemia stems from blood loss, Dr. Taff works to determine the cause of bleeding and resolve the issue. If nutritional deficiencies are to blame, she works with you to find a nutrition and supplementation plan that increases your red blood count. 

Anemia brought on by chronic disease can be treated by improving the underlying condition. If you require specialized care, Dr. Taff remains in close contact with your extended health team as you move through treatment. 

If required, a bone marrow biopsy can determine if aplastic anemia or other disorders of red blood cell production are present. If this is found, blood transfusions and medications may help. Drug therapy might include antibiotics, immunosuppressive medications, and other options. 

If you’re concerned about persistent fatigue, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of anemia, we recommend that you schedule a diagnostic evaluation today. Online booking is one option, or you are always welcome to call the office to check appointment availability. 

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