National Geographic : 1951 Jun
Anemia affects millions of people, both young hundred thousand people in the United States with and old, in our country today. Fortunately, medical this disease are able to live nearly normal lives. science has accomnliKhPd u\~ndlprs iQnti,;... tain types of this disease. Anemia caused by a deficiency of iron can be easily cured. This is usually accomplished by taking medicine containing concentrated iron which the doctor prescribes. Foods such as lean meat, eggs, and green, leafy vegetables are rich in iron and should be included in the diet. What medical science is doing... The control of pernicious anemia is one of the great triumphs of modern medicine. Less than twenty-five years ago, victims of this disease gen erally lived only two and one-half years from the time the condition was diagnosed. In 1926, however, a substance was found in liver that usually would do much to control pernicious anemia. Today, as a result of this discovery, the one Normal blood looks like this Through a microscope. The red cells contain a proper amount of coloring matter, or hemoglobin, a substance necessary for the transportation of oxygen throughout the body. C Anemic blood, from a victim of ; nutritional or iron-deficiency ane mia, looks like this. The red cells are reduced in number, and are pale in color because they lack sufficient hemoglobin. Research has developed other effective weapons against this disease-for example, vitamin B-12 . This vitamin controls pernicious anemia as effec tively as liver extract. There are many different types of anemia, each of which has a specific cause. Various dietary de ficiencies, defects in the functions of the organs that manufacture blood corpuscles, exposure to toxic substances, and certain underlying chronic con ditions or infections may be responsible for it. What you can do... Anemia may develop gradually. Often the first symptoms-such as fatigue, weakness, and nerv ousness-may not seem serious enough to demand medical attention. If these symptoms persist, however, they should receive proper medical attention. Specialists say that it is unwise to resort to any form of self treatment. They emphasize that anemia can be cured or controlled only when the exact cause of the disease is determined and appropriate treatment is given.