One of the many types of megaloblastic anemias is pernicious anemia. Treatment guidelines of the same are pointed in the content that follows.
Pernicious anemia is a chronic progressive anemia found in older adults. It can be caused by the loss of gastric parietal cells, as well as their concomitant inability to soak in vitamin B12. Usually, this lack in the ability of absorption of vitamin B12 could also depict the decreased production of gastric acid, that plays an important role in the assimilation of vitamin B12 from foods that are rich in it. As far as the initial treatment goes, doctors recommend injections of vitamin B12 into the body in order to quickly replace body stores. However, various studies have exhibited that B12 injections that are long-term can also be maintained with high doses of oral B12 supplements. Before we latch into studying about the treatment of pernicious anemia, both natural and professional, we must break down all the causes and symptoms of this disease.
For the most part, pernicious anemia can be caused due to the lack of a kind of protein which is often referred to as the intrinsic factor, and is produced by parietal cells present in the stomach’s lining. What’s more, if you’re an aged alcoholic, chances are, your diet demonstrates vitamin B12 deficiency in large amounts. Intestinal infections such as Crohn’s disease affect the absorption capacity of vitamin B12, thus, leading to this type of anemia in the body. Last but not the least, any rare genetic disorder in children, affecting the ability of the body to produce this intrinsic factor, could lead to this condition.
Being one of the types of anemia, pernicious anemia has symptoms similar to it. Sore tongue, fatigue, extreme low or extreme high blood pressure, faster heartbeat, and frequent diarrhea are some of the common symptoms experienced. What’s more, due to impaired blood cells, the body tends to suffer from jaundice. This, in many cases, exhibits this ailment in people. Personality transformation and neuropathic pain too indicate vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms.
Doctors treat pernicious anemia by replacing the vitamin B12 that’s missing in your body. The target of treatment involves prevention of anemia by combating its signs and complications, and treating the very cause. Following are some pointers that talk about its treatment.
- If in the initial stage, pernicious anemia can be treated with vitamin B12 shots and pills. Doctors replace the missing B12 in the body by these shots at regular intervals.
- For people facing trouble with swallowing pills, vitamin B12 nasal gels and sprays that bring back the level of this vitamin to normal are available in the market. Since the condition is common in older adults, nose gels and sprays have gained a lot of significance in recent years, as they are an effective natural treatment.
- Dietary vitamin B12 supplements in the form of oral or sublingual B12 tablets that are widely available in markets and drug stores are found to be highly beneficial. However, these pills should be taken under a doctor’s prescription only.
Scientific research claims there isn’t a foolproof cure to pernicious anemia. Treatment may last up to a lifetime, in severe cases. However, repletion of vitamin B12 with the help of various treatment methods is found to be extremely useful. For effective treatment, one last piece of advice would be being transparent to your health care provider regarding your history, as it is only then that he would be able to action relevant diagnosis and treatment.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be replaced for the advice of a medical professional.