Iron Deficiency anemia treatment, diagnosis & prescriptions.
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Can I talk to a doctor on Maple about my iron deficiency?
Yes. In some cases, a doctor on Maple can help you diagnose iron deficiency or manage a previously diagnosed case online. They’ll be able to provide advice, write necessary prescriptions, order lab tests, and recommend an appropriate course of treatment.
If the doctor suspects you have a more serious problem, they may suggest for you to go to a clinic for a thorough physical examination.
Can I get a prescription on Maple?
Yes, our physicians can prescribe medications online during your consultation. Once you accept a prescription, you’ll have the option to pick it up from any pharmacy or to have it delivered right to your door at no additional cost.
You can visit our How it Works page to learn more.
What is iron deficiency anemia?
Iron deficiency anemia is a common type of anemia, a condition in which blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells that carry oxygen around the body. Iron deficiency anemia is caused by a lack of iron in your body and diet.
Is anemia and iron deficiency the same thing?
Iron deficiency is a type of anemia. Anemia is a condition that occurs when you lack enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout your body, and it can be caused by a number of different things.
Can iron deficiency occur without anemia?
Yes. It’s possible to have iron deficiency without having anemia, when iron levels in the blood drop. It’s actually more common than iron deficiency anemia.
What are the symptoms of iron deficiency anemia?
Symptoms of iron deficiency anemia include:
- Extreme fatigue
- Pale Skin
- Chest pain, fast heartbeat, or shortness of breath
- Cold hands and feet
- Sore or inflamed tongue
- Brittle nails
- Cravings for non-food substances, such as dirt, ice, or start
- Poor appetite
What causes iron deficiency anemia?
Iron deficiency anemia occurs when your body doesn’t have enough iron to produce hemoglobin, which colours red blood cells and allows them to carry oxygen through the body. Causes include:
- Blood loss: heavy menstrual flows, peptic ulcers, hiatal hernia, colorectal cancer, or other conditions that cause chronic blood loss.
- Low-iron diet: you need to eat iron-rich foods to maintain your blood-iron levels, including meat, eggs, leafy greens, and fortified foods.
- Inability to absorb iron: Intestinal disorders, such as celiac disease, can prevent you from absorbing nutrients from food and lead to iron deficiency anemia.
- Pregnancy: as the mother’s blood volume increases and becomes a source of hemoglobin for the growing fetus, the mother’s iron stores can become diluted.
How can I treat iron deficiency & iron deficiency anemia?
The first step in iron deficiency treatment is iron supplements. Take these supplements on an empty stomach with vitamin C, which helps absorb iron. You can also eat iron-rich foods, such as beef, pork, poultry, seafood, beans, dark leafy vegetables, peas, dried fruit, and iron-fortified foods, alongside vitamin C-rich foods to increase absorption.
Your doctor will also want to treat the underlying cause of your iron deficiency, especially if the supplements don’t work. They will try to find what is causing the malabsorption and treat that issue (e.g. with medications to treat peptic ulcers or surgery to remove a bleeding tumour or polyp). In severe cases you may require a blood transfusion or intravenous iron supplementation.
What is Maple?
With Maple, you can start talking to a doctor about your symptoms in a matter of minutes. We’re a healthcare app for fast, convenient 24/7 access to Canadian doctors.
You simply log in, tap a button to request a consultation, and we’ll immediately connect you to a doctor via live chat or video. You can visit our How it Works page to learn more.
Our doctors can assess symptoms, and provide treatment, including prescriptions as necessary.
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