Polycythaemia is a blood disorder that results in an increased level of circulating red blood cells in the blood stream. Polycythaemia usually means an increase in haematocrit (the ratio of the volume of red blood cells to the total volume of blood) and haemoglobin (the protein responsible for transporting oxygen in the blood). Polycythaemia occurs when the haematocrit is greater than 48% in women and 52% in men and/or the haemoglobin level is greater than 16.5g/dL (gram per decalitre) in women and 18.5g/dL in men. There are two types of polycythaemia, Primary polycythaemia, which is due to inherent problems in red blood cell production, and Secondary polycythaemia which occurs as a response to other factors or underlying conditions that promote red blood cell production.
Symptoms of polycythaemia may vary among people, with some having minimal to no symptoms. However, the common and general symptoms include:
If you or your loved ones are experiencing any symptoms of polycythaemia, a doctor should be consulted. There are leading hospitals in Gurgaon and Delhi NCR that deal with its treatment, as well as hospitals in Patna, and one such hospital in Darbhanga in Bihar. Always trust premier institution which have special departments for the treatment of such conditions.
Causes of polycythaemia are primary and secondary, just like its types. Here are details:
Primary polycythaemia occurs due to acquired or inherited genetic mutations, and have two sub-types, which include:
Polycythaemia Vera: This is a rare condition typically associated with an elevated white blood cell count and platelet count, known as leucocytosis and thrombocytosis respectively. An enlarged spleen is a distinct clinical feature of polycythaemia Vera.
Primary Familial and Congenital Polycythaemia (PFCP): This type is also thought to be caused by genetic mutations to the EPOR gene which provides instructions to make erythropoietin, which is the hormone responsible for red blood cell production.
Secondary polycythaemia is usually caused by increased erythropoietin in response to chronic hypoxia (low oxygen levels) or an erythropoietin secreting tumour.
Chronic hypoxia is in turn caused by chronic lung diseases such as:
o Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or hypoventilation syndrome
o Chronic heart diseases
o Sleep apnoea
o Pulmonary hypertension
Erythropoietin secreting tumours can release increased amount of erythropoietin. The most common of these are:
o Liver cancer
o Kidney Cancer
o Adrenal adenoma
o Uterine tumours
Content created and supplied by: Jonathankay (via Opera News )