Anaemia is a condition in which you have too few red blood cells to carry the oxygen around your body. Symptoms include:
- lack of energy
- feeling the cold
- shortness of breath
- palpitation (awareness of your heartbeat)
There are many other causes of anaemia which can also effect people with chronic kidney disease. Your doctor may need to arrange tests to rule out these other causes.
There are two resons why you could develop anaemia if you have chronic kidney disease.
Firstly, the kidneys produce a hormone called erythropoetin, which stimulates the bone marrow to produce red blood cells. If you have chronic kidney disease (usually at late stage) your kidneys may not produce enough erythropoetin. This can be treated with injection of artificially produced erythropoetin, which are injected under your skin to top up the levels in your body.
Secondly, if you are at late stage you may not absorb iron from your food. Iron is essential for the production of red blood cells. This can be treated with occasional intravenous infusions of a concentrated iron solution.