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Specialty scores for Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia
Autoimmune hematological diseases are conditions where the body’s immune system produces antibodies that attack and damage specific proteins and blood cells in the bloodstream.
Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is a blood disorder where the body’s immune system produces proteins called antibodies that attack the surfaces of red blood cells causing them to rupture open.
Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is a blood disorder that is characterized by the production of antibodies by the immune system of the body which attack and destroy red blood cells in the bloodstream.1
Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is a blood disorder where red blood cells in the bloodstream are damaged by antibodies (proteins) produced by the immune system of the body.
Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s defense mechanism mistakenly produces antibodies against some part of the body itself. For most of us, for most of the time, antibodies are helpful. They are usually produced in response to foreign material (such as bacteria or viruses), allowing the body to quickly recognize the problem, and activate defense mechanisms. When antibodies are mistakenly produced against something that is part of our body, those same defense mechanisms are again activated, but this time our own body is attacked. A wide variety of diseases can result, including arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease.
An autoimmune disease is one where antibodies are produced which attack an element of our own body. Antibodies are the molecules produced by our immune system which are designed to recognize and destroy ‘foreign’ material. For example, we normally make antibodies to recognize bacteria or viruses, a crucial step in allowing our immune system to identify and destroy the disease. However, if the body ‘incorrectly’ makes antibodies against cells or molecules which belong to us then that part of the body is attacked, leading to an auto-immune disease. More well-known autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease. However, auto-immune diseases can also attack the skin, the thyroid gland and even the blood cells. Autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA) occur when the body produces antibodies which recognize our own red blood cells. These antibodies then attach to the red blood cells and ‘burst’ (or hemolyse) them. As the body cannot keep up with the rate of destruction of red blood cells, the patient becomes anemic – and may suffer with symptoms including shortness of breath, fatigue and fainting. In the most severe cases, there may not be sufficient red cells to transport oxygen to the tissues and the person becomes critically unwell.