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Aplastic Anemia

< Blood and Bone Disease

Aplastic Anemia

About Aplastic Anemia

Aplastic anemia is a rare but serious blood disorder. If you have it, your bone marrow doesn't make enough new blood cells. Your doctor will diagnose aplastic anemia based on your medical and family histories, a physical exam and test results. Once your doctor knows the cause and severity of the condition, he or she can create a treatment plan for you. Treatments include blood transfusions, blood and marrow stem cell transplants, and medicines.


Symptoms include fatigue, weakness, dizziness and shortness of breath. Aplastic anemia can cause heart problems such as an irregular heartbeat, an enlarged heart and heart failure. You may also have frequent infections and bleeding.

Risk Factors

In many cases, the cause of aplastic anemia is unknown. But development of this condition may be caused by:

  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Certain inherited conditions
  • Certain medicines
  • Infections such as hepatitis, Epstein-Barr virus or HIV
  • Pregnancy
  • Radiation therapy and chemotherapy for cancer
  • Toxic substances, such as pesticides, arsenic and benzene