Low Hematocrit (Hct)

The number of red cell in the blood is very important since these cells carry hemoglobin, the particle that binds to oxygen, which is carried to the various parts of the body. Hematocrit (Hct) is a test that identifies the quantity of red cell in a given volume of blood, which is revealed in portion. Individuals who have a low Hct have a low percentage of RBCs in their blood, and there are many causes why this may occur.

Low Hct

Understanding Hematocrit (HCT)

Causes of Low Hct

The regular hematocrit variety is 38.5– 50% in men and 34.9– 44.5% in women. Children up to 15 years of ages have differing ranges, depending upon their age and sex. Low Hct is generally connected with anemia, and causes include:

1. Anemia

A person who does not have sufficient RBCs to carry oxygen to the tissues is stated to be anemic, which can make one feel tired all the time. Typical symptoms of anemia include paleness, tiredness, cold hands/feet, irregularities in heart beats, and poor mental function. There are various types of anemia according to cause, a few of which might result from major illness. Seek advice from a doctor if you believe you may have anemia to be able to get appropriate treatment. Anemia can be prevented by consuming a balanced diet, if the cause results from iron shortage. However, some kinds of anemia may need other medical treatments such as blood transfusion.

2. Leukemia

Cancer of the blood and other blood-forming tissues such as the bone marrow and lymphatic system is called leukemia. Although this condition has various types, typical symptoms are relentless fatigue, fever, chills, weak point, and weight-loss. Leukemic patients likewise suffer from regular infections, bone pain and simple bleeding. They can have swollen lymph nodes and red spots called petechiae. Treatment is based upon the type of condition and complications. These typically consist of chemotherapy, biological therapy, radiation therapy, and stem cell hair transplant.

3. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) or lupus for brief, is an autoimmune disease that impacts the blood and causes anemia in 50% of children impacted. It materializes as low Hct, low platelet and low leukocyte (WBC) counts. These may be also be because of side effects of treatment. SLE patients might experience tiredness due to various aspects such as anemia, pain, anxiety, poor physical fitness, and poor sleep.

4. Rheumatoid Arthritis

Individuals with rheumatoid arthritis do not only experience joint discomforts, they also deal with anemia. This autoimmune disease is identified by chronic swelling, which likewise impacts iron metabolic process, function of the bone marrow, and production of erythropoeitin (a hormone secreted by the kidney). These cause low Hct. Treatment consists of rest, joint security, correct amount of workout, medications and patient education. Surgery might be needed sometimes.

5. Medication Effects

Particular medications have side effects that can cause low Hct. Typical examples of medications are penicillin and chloramphenicol. Penicillin is used for infections of the throat, tooth, sinuses and others. Chloramphenicol can induce bone marrow depression, which leads to anemia. These medications ought to not be used without a doctor’s advice to prevent these major complications.

6. Nutritional Deficiency

Nutritional shortage can cause iron deficiency anemia, which is defined by low Hct, low hemoglobin and low serum ferritin levels. A lack of iron in the diet is the most typical type of nutritional shortage and a typical cause of anemia worldwide. This type of anemia might be associated with development spurt in children and pregnancy in women. Other conditions that can increase the demand for iron or minimize its quantity in the diet consist of dieting, surgery, or disease. Treatment depends on these conditions and might consist of consumption of dietary supplements.

7. Overhydration

Low Hct can happen when there is too much fluids in the body or overhydration. When the kidneys can not remove excess water in the body complications such as behavioral and mental modifications, seizures and coma may take place. In mild cases, limitation of fluid intake might fix the issue. However, in severe cases, medical professionals might recommend diuretics, which increase fluid excretion or urination.

8. Other Causes

Malnutrition, acute bleeding from trauma, chronic bleeding, red cell damage, and edema (swelling of the body) may likewise cause low Hct. Treatment depends upon the cause, which might include nutritional supplements, pharmacological treatment or surgery.

Low Hct symbolizes a reduction in the variety of red blood cells in the blood. This may be because of numerous aspects, the most typical of which is anemia relevant to iron shortage.

Last Update - September 23, 2017


The Author

Reyus Mammadli

As a healthy lifestyle advisor I try to guide individuals in becoming more aware of living well and healthy through a series of proactive and preventive measures, disease prevention steps, recovery after illness or medical procedures. Education: Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.

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