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Hemochromatosis is a condition that causes an overproduction of iron in the body, with affected individuals absorbing up to four times the iron that healthy people absorb. Over time, the accumulated iron can cause damage to joints, organs, and other parts of the body. If left untreated, hemochromatosis can even be fatal. Because the body cannot get rid of excess iron, it is important to receive medical treatment for this condition.

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Joint Pain

Hemochromatosis is notorious for its pernicious effects on joint health. The joints of the hands, hips, knees, and ankles are the most likely to be affected, though other areas can also be affected. Because the iron levels in the blood increase without control, they build up over time in the joints, causing them to deteriorate gradually. If left untreated, the damage may be irreversible. It may help to perform daily stretching exercises to improve joint motion. Another option is to take over-the-counter medication to reduce pain.

Hemochromatosis joint pain
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Abdominal Pain

One of the most debilitating symptoms of hemochromatosis is abdominal pain, usually in the upper abdomen. This symptom usually appears at the early stages of the condition as the accumulation of iron in the blood causes pain in the muscles that control the abdomen. The pain can often last for a long time and is especially noticeable after eating. It may help to place a heating pad on the affected area. Rest is also recommended during moments of pain.

what is Hemochromatosis
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Fatigue

Another common symptom that people with hemochromatosis tend to experience is fatigue. Fatigue is defined as a chronic state of exhaustion that doesn't go away with rest. It occurs because the buildup of iron affects the brain's capacity to regulate sleep, making it more difficult to stick to a natural sleep rhythm. You may experience difficulty going to bed at night, and it may be excruciatingly difficult to get up in the mornings. Prolonged periods of fatigue can increase the risk of developing depression as well as other mental issues.

how do you know if you have Hemochromatosis
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Weakness

As the amount of iron in the body increases, so does muscle weakness. When there is too much iron present in the blood, the muscles become damaged over time, leading to increased weakness. This is reflected by the difficulty you might experience when trying to walk up a flight of stairs or carry a heavy bag of groceries home from the store. It is necessary to treat hemochromatosis to bring down the level of iron in the blood. Otherwise, the muscles of the body may become permanently damaged.

signs of Hemochromatosis
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Diabetes

Hemochromatosis causes a buildup of iron in the body, most notably in the pancreas and liver. Because of this, the pancreas becomes damaged and is unable to regulate blood sugar levels. Over time, this may contribute to the development of diabetes and other conditions. If you suspect that you might have diabetes, look out for associated symptoms such as weakness and frequent urination. A healthy lifestyle is instrumental in treating diabetes.

symptoms of Hemochromatosis
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Erectile Dysfunction

Among the many causes of erectile dysfunction is hemochromatosis. This condition may lead to erectile dysfunction because your brain is no longer able to send signals to the muscles that allow for blood flow into the penis. Penile dysfunction may be caused by a variety of other conditions, including anxiety, depression, diabetes or hormonal problems. If you are experiencing erectile dysfunction as a result of hemochromatosis, talk to your doctor about possible solutions to avoid permanent damage to the penis.

Hemochromatosis signs
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Arrhythmia

One of the main symptoms of hemochromatosis is arrhythmia or the irregular beating of the heart. This condition develops as a result of the buildup of iron in the blood and muscles, causing an irregular rhythm in the heart. Even though this symptom is not deadly, it can develop into a more severe condition over time. There are different types of arrhythmia, including atrial fibrillation, the most common type, and supraventricular tachycardia.

Hemochromatosis symptoms
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Heart Failure

If the arrhythmia developed by the patient becomes too severe, it can lead to heart failure. The good news is that this only appears in the later stages of hemochromatosis, meaning that if initial treatment is successful, the chances of developing heart failure reduce considerably.

signs and symptoms Hemochromatosis
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Liver Failure

One of the organs most likely to experience a dangerous buildup of iron in the liver. When iron levels become too high, life-threatening conditions may develop, including liver failure. The liver is one of the most important organs of the body because it filters the blood, removing chemicals and toxins. When liver function becomes impaired, the consequences can be deadly.

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Lack of Energy

People with hemochromatosis are likely to experience a lack of energy in their everyday lives. The constant feeling of being out of breath or tired has detrimental consequences for the health and wellbeing of hemochromatosis patients. Luckily, you can take supplements to improve energy levels and restore organ function. It is also crucial to lead a healthy lifestyle if you are diagnosed with hemochromatosis. By combining an adequate diet with a healthy amount of exercise, you can reduce the negative effects of the disease on your energy levels.

Hemochromatosis

Disclaimer

This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.