Fast Five Quiz: Anemia

Emmanuel C. Besa, MD


February 20, 2019

The most important index is the MCV, on the basis of which anemias can be classified as microcytic, normocytic, or macrocytic, as follows:

  • Microcytic anemias (usually defined as MCV < 80 fL) include anemias of chronic disease, iron deficiency, lead poisoning, and the hemoglobinopathies (ie, sickle cell disease, sideroblastic anemia, thalassemias)

  • Normocytic anemias (MCV 80-100 fL) include anemias of acute blood loss, hemolysis, uremia, and cancer. Patients with early forms of microcytic anemia and multifactorial anemia may have normocytic MCVs

  • Macrocytic anemias (usually defined as MCV >100 fL) include anemias related to alcoholism, folate and vitamin B-12 deficiencies (pernicious anemia), and some preleukemic conditions

Read more about the classification of anemia.


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