Folate is a crucial nutrient required for the proper functioning and growth of the body. It plays a vital role in the formation of red blood cells, DNA synthesis, and cell division. A folate deficiency can lead to anemia, a condition where the body fails to produce enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to various body organs. In this article, we will discuss the symptoms of folate deficiency anemia to watch for.
What is Folate Deficiency Anemia?
Folate deficiency anemia is a medical condition that occurs when the body does not have enough folate to produce red blood cells. Over the years, our experts at the cancer and blood disorders treatment center have noticed that the deficiency is mostly in patients who have gastric bypass surgery, elderly patients, and strict vegetarians.
The deficiency of folate can result from various factors such as inadequate dietary intake, malabsorption, alcoholism, and pregnancy. The symptoms of folate deficiency anemia are similar to other types of anemia, making it difficult to diagnose without proper medical tests.
Symptoms of Folate Deficiency Anemia
Folate deficiency anemia, also known as vitamin B12, has a wide range of symptoms. The symptoms normally develop gradually but can worsen if the condition is untreated. The symptoms of folate deficiency anemia include:
1. Fatigue and Weakness
One of the most common symptoms of folate deficiency anemia is fatigue and weakness. The lack of red blood cells in the body can result in the body not receiving enough oxygen, leading to a feeling of tiredness, and lack of energy. This symptom can be mild to severe, depending on the severity of the deficiency.
2. Shortness of Breath
Another symptom of folate deficiency anemia is shortness of breath. The lack of oxygen in the body due to the insufficient production of red blood cells can cause the heart to work harder to supply the body with the required oxygen, leading to shortness of breath. This symptom can be noticeable during physical activity or even when at rest.
3. Pale Skin
The lack of red blood cells in the body can result in a pale skin tone. This is because red blood cells contain hemoglobin, a protein that gives blood its red color. When red blood cells are deficient, the skin appears pale, and the eyes may appear pale or yellowish.
4. Mouth Sores and Tongue Swelling
Folate deficiency anemia can also cause mouth sores and tongue swelling. The lack of red blood cells in the body can result in tongue swelling, making it difficult to eat or speak. Additionally, mouth sores can develop due to the body’s weakened immune system.
5. Irritability and Depression
The deficiency of folate can affect the production of neurotransmitters in the brain, leading to symptoms of irritability and depression. The lack of folate can cause a decrease in the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for regulating mood, leading to depression, anxiety, and irritability.
Book an Appointment with the Cancer and Blood Disorders Treatment Center for more information on Folate Deficiency Anemia
At the cancer and blood disorder treatment center, Dr. Meelu is dedicated and ready to provide high-quality care for patients with folate deficiency anemia. We understand that folate deficiency anemia can lead to severe health complications if left untreated. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is essential to seek medical attention to diagnose and treat the condition because the symptoms can eventually affect body organs. Contact us today and book an appointment by filling out our online contact form or call us at 301-638-1007. Our team is always ready to assist you in every way we can. We are here to help you get an early diagnosis and treatment of folate deficiency anemia.