Blood Disorders Diagnosis and Treatment

The most frequently used test to diagnose blood disorders is the complete blood count. The CBC gazes at the three types of blood cells and determines if any are increased or decreased or if more than one blood cell is affected. A blood smear may also be contained with the CBC, with a microscopic examination to provide additional helpful information. For bleeding or clotting problems, mostly physician will likely order coagulation blood tests, which include the prothrombin time (PT) and the partial thromboplastic time (PTT).

Treatment is determined by specific diagnosis. Some chronic blood disorders have no particular treatment but may require treatment during acute events. For example:

  • Anemia caused by iron deficiency will be cured with iron supplementation. Beta thalassemia major, an organic form of anemia, is treated with monthly blood transfusions.
  • Hemophilia can be treated with coagulation factor replacement products that can be used to treat individual bleeds or, when given on a regular basis, prevent bleeds (prophylaxis).
  • Polycythemia Vera is treated by phlebotomy—representation a pint of blood intermittently to keep the number of red cells from dropping below the dangerous level.
  • Blood clots may be cured with anticoagulant therapy (blood thinners). Some cases may require catheter-directed thrombolysis to melt the blockage.
  • Thrombocythemia may be cured with aspirin or might require medications such as hydroxyurea, interferon Alfa, or anagrelide (rarely used).
  • Immune thrombocytopenia might be treated with corticosteroids such as prednisone or medications that increase the platelet count. Eliminating the spleen is another treatment performed when needed

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Related Associations:  Société Française d'Hématologie  | Georgian Association of Hematotogy and Transfusiotogy | Deutsche Gesellschaft für Hämatologie und Onkologie  | Eliniki Ematologhiki Eteria | Magyar Hematológiai és Transzfúziológiai Társaság  | Hematological Society of Iceland | Haematology Association of Ireland | Israel Society of Hematology and Blood Transfusion | Società Italiana di Ematologia