High Aplastic Anemia Cases in India Reported in India

The occurrence of the rare and deadly blood disorder, aplastic anemia, (1 Trusted Source
Aplastic Anemia

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) is notably higher in India compared to Western nations.

What is Aplastic Anemia

Aplastic anemia is a rare but very serious blood disorder. It occurs when bone marrow gets damaged and can’t make enough new blood cells and platelets leading to anemia and thrombocytopenia. It is a life-threatening condition as the patients are at high risk of serious infections, bleeding issues and other complications. It is of two types: inherited, a rare condition that is passed from parents to children; and idiopathic acquired aplastic anemia which can develop over a period of time.

The cause for acquired aplastic anemia is generally unknown but some known causes include exposure to environmental toxins or chemicals, chemotherapy or radiation treatment, and ageing.“Acquired severe aplastic anemia also called idiopathic aplastic anemia is a common disease affecting Indians. The incidence in India and South East Asia is 3-4 times more than in Europe and America,” Dr Gaurav Kharya, Director, Centre for Bone Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital Delhi, told IANS.

Did You Know?

Aplastic anemia has an annual incidence of 2-3 cases per million in Europe but exhibits a higher prevalence in East Asia.

“The exact incidence of aplastic anemia in India is not known. The end treatment for aplastic anemia is stem cell transplantation,” Dr RishiRaj Sinha, Senior Resident, National Secretary Federation of All India Medical Association (FAIMA).

The experts noted that key to successful management is early identification and referral. While early stem cell transplant or bone marrow transplant (BMT) can help cure the dreaded and life-threatening blood disorder aplastic anemia by more than 90 per cent, the experts noted that expensive treatment means it remains unaffordable for the masses.

“It tends to affect the poorest of the poor,” he said.“We need to include immunosuppressive therapy into Ayushman Bharat and need to open more BMT centres in India. That is why we are establishing BMT centres in government hospitals where BMT is done for free for poor patients,” he added.


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