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About Hemochromatosis

Context:

Recently, health experts revealed all about Hemochromatosis or ‘bronze diabetes’.

Relevance:

GS II: Health

About Hemochromatosis:

  • Hemochromatosis is an inherited condition characterized by the slow buildup of iron levels in the body over many years.
  • It is primarily classified into two types:
Hereditary Hemochromatosis:
  • Hereditary hemochromatosis is driven by a mutation in the HFE gene, resulting in individuals being homozygous for the C282Y variant.
  • This genetic anomaly leads to lifelong excessive iron absorption in the intestines.
Secondary Hemochromatosis:
  • Secondary hemochromatosis is typically caused by external factors such as frequent blood transfusions, excessive iron supplementation, or certain medical conditions.
  • Iron accumulation in secondary hemochromatosis is often more rapid and can have a similar impact on organ function.
  • Symptoms of hemochromatosis usually appear between the ages of 30 and 60.
  • Common symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, weakness, and joint pain.
Treatment:
  • The standard treatment for primary hemochromatosis is phlebotomy.
  • Phlebotomy involves removing red blood cells, which are the body’s main mobilizer of iron, to reduce iron toxicity.
  • Phlebotomy is usually performed once or twice a week.

-Source: Hindustan Times


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