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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What is hemochromatosis?

What is hemochromatosis?
Thu, 17 Dec 2009
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Intro: Of all the minerals you need for good health, iron is one of the most familiar. After all, the producers of everything from breakfast cereals to vitamin tonics tell us that iron builds rich, red blood. Iron does help form oxygen-carrying hemoglobin in your red blood cells, but it's also essential for a number of other body processes, including proper brain function, a strong immune system and healthy muscles. Yet for people with hereditary hemochromatosis (HH), even small amounts of iron can cause serious problems. That's because hereditary hemochromatosis causes your body to absorb too much iron from the food you eat. The excess is stored in your organs, especially your liver, heart and pancreas. Sometimes the stored iron damages these organs, leading to life-threatening conditions such as cancer, heart problems and liver disease. Signs and symptoms of hereditary hemochromatosis usually appear in midlife, although they may occur earlier. The most common complaint is joint pain, but hereditary hemochromatosis can also cause a number of other symptoms, including fatigue, abdominal pain and impotence. Though not always easy to diagnose, hereditary hemochromatosis can be effectively treated by removing blood from your body to lower the level of iron. Go the site below for more detailed information on this hereditary disease: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hemochromatosis/DS00455/DSECTION=2
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doctor1 MD

I was recently diagnosed as having one gene of hemochromatosis. What does that mean? I m concerned for my daughters age 29 and 27. Is there anything that can be done to screen my daughters? My mother had this and passed from liver cancer after an 18 month battle.

doctor1 MD

I was having phlebotomies for eight years due to Hemochromotosis but my feritin has been normal for the past five years and the phlebotomies have stopped. Does this mean I no longer have iron overload? My understanding is that hemochromotosis is forever. Last January my feritin was 38.

doctor1 MD

Hello, am just reading about hemochromatosis as my 23 year old son has been recently diagnosed - picked up in a blood test related to his work and travel. I read it is inherited. My husband (64) was diagnosed with T2 diabetes 2 years ago and keeps his blood sugars under control but still feels exhausted all the time, and needs afternoon naps etc. Worse after 1 gin or 1 brandy. Should he have a blood test to check for the same thing? Surely this would have been picked up in all the blood tests relating to his T2DM?