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Students4Kids EN » Iron Deficiency Anaemia as a Global Problem

Iron Deficiency Anaemia as a Global Problem

Iron Deficiency Anaemia as a Global Problem

Today, iron deficiency anaemia is the third most frequent chronic disease worldwide after caries and tension headache. According to new statistics published by The Lancet, some 1.2 billion people are currently suffering from iron deficiency anaemia while almost double that number of people are suffering from the symptoms of iron deficiency.

Iron is essential for the functionality of the human organism such as respiration, energy production, DNA synthesis and cell proliferation. The need of iron depends on an individual’s age and on the intensity of formation of new cells during periods of growth or during pregnancy. If seriously and permanently undershot, the blood will not transport sufficient amounts of oxygen.

Malnutrition is deemed to be the main cause of iron deficiency anaemia. Poverty, wars and famines still lead to undernourishment as such. An unbalanced diet based primarily on cereals will additionally reduce the bio-availability of iron while intestinal infections increase the iron material deficiency due to the associated loss of blood.

It is in particular the children under the age of five years who are increasingly affected in South Asia, Western and Central Africa and thus in Zambia; they represent the only age group showing a negative trend regarding the supply of micronutrients since 1990 despite all international help.

A highly regarded review published recently by the New England Journal of Medicine summarises the scientifically founded state of knowledge of the causes and possible therapies of iron deficiency anaemia.

Read and see more:
C.I. Camaschella. Iron-Deficiency Anemia. N Engl J Med 2015; 372:1832-1843May 7, 2015
DOI: 10.1056/NEJMra1401038. Link: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMra1401038
S.R. Pasricha et al. Control of iron deficiency anemia in low- and middle-income countries.
Blood Apr 2013, 121 (14) 2607-2617; DOI: 10.1182/blood-2012-09-453522. Link: http://www.bloodjournal.org/content/bloodjournal/121/14/2607.full.pdf

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