Blood is a crucial component of the body. The blood’s many important tasks include fighting infections, transporting oxygen from the lungs to the cells, and supporting core functions, such as body temperature. Blood disorders can have a dramatic effect on overall health.
Hematologists specialize in diagnosing, treating, and managing blood disorders, including those that affect the bone marrow and the lymphatic system, as well as blood itself. Knowing when to see a hematologist can be critical for receiving and accurate diagnosis and effective treatment of blood and related disorders.
Regional Cancer Care Associates (RCCA) offers advanced treatments to patients with a variety of health conditions, including blood disorders, in New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, and the Washington, D.C., area. Here, we explain the common signs and symptoms that could indicate a need to see a hematologist.
The specific blood disorder symptoms that a patient may experience depend on the person’s condition and how it impacts the body. However, these are some of the most common symptoms that could warrant further testing from a hematology specialist:
Hematology conditions include several types of disorders affecting red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, blood vessels, bone marrow, lymph nodes, the spleen, and the proteins involved in bleeding and clotting. Blood diseases can be benign (noncancerous) disorders or malignant (cancerous).
Anemia occurs when there are insufficient red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. It often stems from iron deficiency or a chronic disease. Hemolytic anemia is a more complex form of the condition. Other related conditions include:
Blood clotting is the body’s response to excessive bleeding, usually after a traumatic injury. Proteins and particles in the blood (platelets) adhere together to form a clot. Blood clotting disorders enable clots to form anywhere in the body, potentially blocking arteries and veins. Blood clotting conditions include:
Bleeding disorders disrupt the body’s ability to form clots when necessary. This can be due to a lack of platelet production or other problems. Bleeding disorders include:
Thrombocytosis and thrombocytopenia refer to conditions in which the body produces either an excessive or an insufficient amount of platelets. These are some related conditions:
Patients with hemochromatosis store excessive levels of iron in organs such as the pancreas, liver, and heart, which can lead to complications.
Originating in blood-forming tissues, leukemia develops when blood cells grow and divide out of control. This overpopulation crowds out healthy blood cells, leading to a decrease in platelets and red and white blood cells. There are four main types of leukemia:
A general term for cancer in the lymphatic system, lymphoma begins in white blood cells within the body’s immune system. There are two main lymphoma categories — Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
These are some other types of malignant blood conditions:
Regional Cancer Care Associates provides attentive, compassionate hematology care to patients and families in New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, and the Washington, D.C., area. The RCCA team of highly trained and experienced hematologists possesses the knowledge and skill to accurately diagnose and effectively treat both cancerous and noncancerous hematologic conditions. Dedicated to providing patients with the most advanced treatment, RCCA physicians draw on the most recent advances in hematology care to select appropriate and effective treatment for their patients.
For more information regarding the common symptoms of blood disorders, or to speak with a qualified healthcare provider, contact Regional Cancer Care Associates or request an appointment at one of RCCA’s more than 20 locations today.