Children's Health and Wellness

How Much Do You Know About Anemia?

The red blood cells in your body look like doughnuts. Their main job is to carry oxygen to body tissues and remove carbon dioxide. Anemia is a condition in which the body doesn’t have enough healthy red blood cells. Learn more about anemia by taking this quiz, based on information from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI).

1. Anemia can be short term (temporary) or lasting a long time (chronic), and can range from mild to severe.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Many types of anemia are mild and can be easily treated. Some types can even be prevented with a healthy diet. Other types are chronic and need ongoing treatment.A. TrueB. False2. When you are anemic, your body produces too few healthy red blood cells, loses too many of them, or destroys them faster than they can be replaced.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Anemia can refer to a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells or to a condition in which the red blood cells contain too little hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is an iron-rich protein that gives blood its red color. This protein helps red blood cells carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.A. TrueB. False3. Anemia can be a sign of a serious illness.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Anemia may be a sign of ulcers, benign polyps in the colon, leukemia, colon cancer, tumors or kidney failure. If you have symptoms of anemia, talk with your health care provider, who can make the diagnosis. Treatment will depend on what has caused the anemia and how severe it is.A. TrueB. False4. Anemia comes in only one type.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Anemia can be one of several types, each with different causes and treatments. These include aplastic anemia, Fanconi anemia, iron-deficiency anemia, hemolytic anemia, pernicious anemia and sickle cell anemia.A. TrueB. False5. Iron-deficiency anemia is the most common type of anemia.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is According to the NHLBI, iron-deficiency anemia is a common form of anemia, and the most common nutritional deficiency worldwide. Women of childbearing age and pregnant women are at increased risk for iron-deficiency anemia. In this type of anemia, the body does not have enough iron to form hemoglobin, which means there is not enough hemoglobin to carry oxygen to the whole body. Your main source of iron is the food you eat. Good sources of iron are red meat, poultry, fish, shellfish and iron-fortified foods.A. TrueB. False6. Treatments for anemia range from taking supplements or medications, to getting shots or having surgery.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Anemia treatment depends on the cause. The goal of treatment is to increase the amount of oxygen that your blood can carry. This is done by raising the red blood cell count and/or hemoglobin level. Another goal is to treat the underlying condition or cause of the anemia.A. TrueB. False7. Eating a healthy, varied diet can prevent all types of anemia.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is The causes of some types of anemia have nothing to do with nutrition. For example, anemia can be caused by heavy menstrual bleeding or an infection.A. TrueB. False8. Fatigue is the main symptom of anemia.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Other symptoms include weakness, pale skin, a fast or irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, and cognitive problems.A. TrueB. False9. Everyone has the same risk for iron-deficiency anemia.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is Vegetarians, menstruating women, and anyone who has diabetes, Crohn’s disease, cancer, or kidney or liver failure have a higher risk. Anemia also can develop during pregnancy because of low levels of iron and folic acid and changes in the blood. During the first two trimesters, a woman's blood plasma increases faster than the number of red blood cells; this dilutes the blood and can lead to anemia. Children younger than 2 years also are at risk for anemia, particularly if they drink a lot of milk. Cow's milk is low in iron, which children need for growth.A. TrueB. False10. See your doctor if you feel fatigued for unexplained reasons, especially if you are at risk for anemia.You didn't answer this question.You answered The correct answer is You could have anemia or another unrelated condition.A. TrueB. FalseYour score was:
Online Source: What is anemia? National Heart, Lung and Blood Institutehttp://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/anemia/printall-index.html
Online Source: What is iron-deficiency anemia? National Heart, Lung and Blood Institutehttp://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ida/printall-index.html
Online Source: Your guide to anemia, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institutehttp://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/blood/anemia-yg.pdf
Author: Allen, James
Online Editor: Sinovic, Dianna
Online Medical Reviewer: Finke, Amy, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: newMentor board-certified, academically affiliated clinician
Date Last Reviewed: 8/23/2013