Sideroblastic anemia is a term used to describe a group of rare blood disorders characterized by the bone marrow's inability to manufacture normal red blood cells. Although some sideroblastic anemias are hereditary, most are acquired and are associated with drugs (alcohol, isoniazid, chloramphenicol, cytotoxic agents, and other Vit B6 antagonists), heavy metals (lead), and various hematologic, neoplastic and inflammatory diseases. Ethanol abuse is the most common cause, but the cause cannot always be identified.
is one of the principal types of iron-utilization anemias
. Abnormal, iron-saturated red cells are present in the blood of people who have this disease. Although the iron
circulates normally from the plasma to the bone marrow
, where new red blood cells
are created, it is not properly incorporated into new red blood cells.Hereditary Sideroblastic Anemia.
The hereditary form is an X-linked recessive trait with variable expression. Hereditary sideroblastic anemias are usually small (microcytic) and of poor color (hypochromic) and thus must be distinguished from iron deficiency and thalassemia
.Acquired Sideroblastic Anemia.
Acquired sideroblastic anemia may be cured when the condition that causes it is treated or removed. If the cause of a patient's anemia cannot be determined, blood transfusions may be necessary. Medications are prescribed to stimulate excretion or excess iron that accumulates as a result of these transfusions.
Causes and Development
is also associated with:
Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms of sideroblastic anemia
are the same as symptoms of the disease that causes the condition, as well as anemia.
Possible complications of sideroblastic anemia
Sideroblastic anemia of unknown origin may lead to leukemia
. It may take as long as 10 years for this disease progression to take place.