Pernicious anemia is harmful to you. The human body requires vitamin B-12 needed to produce red blood cells. When there is a disruption in this process, the body is severely harmed. It is a rare condition however it strikes people in the age group of 60 years or so. This form of anemia is different as it can turn severe and affect the neurological system in your body.
Causes and types of anemia
Pernicious anemia is caused when people have low levels of red blood cells or RBCs in their bodies. The vitamin B-12 plays a vital role when it comes to the creation of red blood cells in the body. The human body needs to create a sufficient amount of vitamin B-12, and this vitamin is found in sources of meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products, rice milk, fortified soy, shellfish and supplements for nutrition.
The Intrinsic Factor Protein
The human body needs a particular type of protein called the intrinsic factor for absorbing the vitamin B-12 in the body. This protein is produced in the stomach, and when you consume the vitamin, it travels and binds with the IF protein. Both vitamin B-12 and protein are absorbed in the last segment of the small intestine. In most cases of pernicious anemia, the immune system of the body attacks and destroys the cells that are produced by IF in the stomach. In case these cells are destroyed, the body cannot produce IF and absorb Vitamin B-12.
How can you detect pernicious anemia?
To detect pernicious anemia, the doctor will advise you to take an ELISA test. This is a series of blood screening tests that will determine the extent and type of pernicious anemia you have. You will also be taught on how to read Elisa test results so that you effectively can monitor the progress of your health and reduction of anemia from your body. The treatment will depend upon the levels of anemia you have. The cure will take time, and there will be a series of Elisa tests for the doctor to check before you are cured. Your doctor will also give you a diet chart that you need to follow to accelerate the healing process.
Cure of Pernicious Anemia
The treatment for pernicious anemia takes place in 2 stages. Your doctor will first treat you for the deficiency of vitamin B-12 and examine you for any lack of iron. He or she will treat you with vitamin b-12 injections that will be gradually reduced with the passage of time.
The treatment will entail you receiving complete blood counts for measuring vitamin b-12 and the amounts of iron in your blood along with a series of blood tests for supervising replacement treatments. The injections for vitamin B-12 are given to you daily or weekly till your levels of vitamin B-12 return to normal. During the first two weeks of your treatment, you doctor might reduce your levels of physical activity. Once your vitamin b-12 levels are normal, you will be called to receive a single shot every month.
Author Bio: Jake R White is a medical expert who guides patients on how to read Elisa test results and monitor pernicious anemia when they are being treated for the condition.