What are the presenting symptoms and signs of anaemia?

  • Tiredness and general apathy
  • Pallor of the nails and mucus membranes (i.e. pale)
  • Heart failure, with shortness of breath on effort, in severe anaemia

Anaemia plus bruising or purpura, hepatosplenomegaly, bone tenderness or jaundice, suggest a serious illness and are indications for urgent referral to hospital.

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