How Iron Deficiency Anemia Causes Diarrhea
There are many different conditions that can cause diarrhea, including irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, bacterial and viral infections, and even food poisoning. However, anemia can also cause the types of loose stools, abdominal cramping, bloating, and other symptoms that are common when a person suffers from diarrhea. This uncomfortable and embarrassing condition happens to everyone occasionally, but serious cases of diarrhea that last longer than a couple days could be a warning sign of something more serious happening in the body.
Here is some information about the anemia diarrhea connection, as well as how to prevent and treat iron deficiency anemia diarrhea in the body.
The Relationship Between Anemia and Diarrhea
There are quite a few different types of anemia, and some types are more likely to cause symptoms of diarrhea. For example, folic acid deficiency anemia involves having an inadequate supply of folic acid in the body and often causes diarrhea. Having low iron levels in the body can also lead to symptoms of diarrhea and abdominal pain in patients. Many people develop anemia because of blood loss from the gastrointestinal tract, and this blood loss is often due to diarrhea caused by an intestinal infection or inflammatory bowel disease.
Does Anemia Cause Diarrhea?
Many people wonder does anemia cause diarrhea, and while anemia caused by diarrhea is rare, it is possible if a patient is experiencing gastrointestinal bleeding that results in loose stools. Individuals who experience this condition often notice foul-smelling stools that are blackish in color as well. This condition typically constitutes a medical emergency that requires immediate attention in an emergency room.
Meanwhile, certain medical conditions, including celiac disease and Crohn’s disease, can cause both anemia and diarrhea at the same time. These anemia diarrhea conditions may also result in weight loss, blood loss in stools, and low bodily absorption of iron.
Iron Deficiency Anemia Diarrhea Warning Signs
Diarrhea that occurs very rarely and that only lasts for a day or two is often no need for serious concern. However, chronic diarrhea can last for several weeks and indicate an untreated infection, irritable bowel syndrome, or inflammatory bowel disease.
If anemia and diarrhea coexist in the body, individuals may also notice symptoms of fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath, dizziness, cold extremities, and pale skin. All of these symptoms can be early warning signs of serious medical conditions, which is why it is recommended to seek treatment for such abnormalities occurring in the body.
Solutions for Preventing Diarrhea and Treating Anemia
Fortunately, iron deficiency anemia diarrhea can be treated and prevented in most instances. If low iron levels are to blame for a person’s anemia, thereby causing loose stools, then iron supplements like Fergon can help restore those levels back to normal. Making dietary adjustments can also help to prevent and control chronic diarrhea symptoms. For example, people suffering from diarrhea should avoid fatty, spicy, and dairy foods and rather stick to clear liquids and low-fiber foods instead.
Other diarrhea treatments include taking antibiotic medications, drinking water and juice to replace fluids, probiotics, and over-the-counter diarrheal medications. If symptoms do not clear up on their own within a couple days with at-home remedies, it is time to consult a physician, who may conduct a blood test or stool test to determine the cause of the iron deficiency anemia diarrhea.
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