4. Anemia: Clinical Approach

  1. Alvin H. Schmaier MD and
  2. Hillard M. Lazarus MD, FACP
  1. Peter W. Marks MD, PhD

Published Online: 22 SEP 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444345254.ch4

Concise Guide to Hematology

Concise Guide to Hematology

How to Cite

Marks, P. W. (2011) Anemia: Clinical Approach, in Concise Guide to Hematology (eds A. H. Schmaier and H. M. Lazarus), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444345254.ch4

Editor Information

  1. Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Cleveland, OH, USA

Author Information

  1. Department of Internal Medicine/Hematology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 22 SEP 2011
  2. Published Print: 4 NOV 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405196666

Online ISBN: 9781444345254



  • anemia;
  • hemolysis;
  • microcytosis;
  • macrocytosis;
  • schistocytes;
  • spherocytes


Anemia is a commonly encountered problem in clinical medicine. Broadly categorized, the causes of anemia relate to acute loss, inadequate production, or destruction of red blood cells. Thoughtful review of the complete blood count and reticulocyte count combined with examination of the peripheral blood smear leads to the creation of an appropriate differential diagnosis. The mean corpuscular volume, red cell distribution width, and reticulocyte count considered together provide particularly useful information, and sometimes point toward the specific cause of anemia present minimizing the amount of additional laboratory investigation required. Accurate and timely diagnosis facilitates appropriate therapeutic intervention.