Chronic Anemia Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Jan 22, 2020
  • Author: Christopher D Braden, DO; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

Be vigilant for acute blood loss while attributing low Hgb and hematocrit values to a chronic state.

Consider anemia as an etiologic factor in patients who present with dyspnea, headache, angina, or altered mental status.

Consider anemia as a contributing factor to jaundice (hemolytic anemia) while focusing on other conditions, such as acute hepatitis, that can present with jaundice.

Be vigilant for the presence of pancytopenia.

Conditions to consider in the differential diagnosis of anemia, along with those in the next section, include the following:

  • Hemophilia, type A

  • Hemophilia, type B

  • Hemorrhoids

  • Henoch-Sch ö nlein purpura

  • Inflammatory bowel disease

  • Malaria

  • Methemoglobinemia

  • Mononucleosis

  • Mycoplasma pneumonia

  • Cushing syndrome

  • Alcohol and substance abuse

  • Coccidioidomycosis

  • Dengue fever

  • Disseminated intravascular coagulation

  • Dysfunctional uterine bleeding

  • Dysmenorrhea

  • Sarcoidosis

  • Systemic lupus erythematosus

Differential Diagnoses