Woman shares warning signs of condition behind 57,000 annual hospital admissions

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Woman shares warning signs of condition behind 57,000 annual hospital admissions

A 26-year-old has spoken out about symptoms of a common health problem that affects around one billion people worldwide.Worryingly, it also causes mor

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A 26-year-old has spoken out about symptoms of a common health problem that affects around one billion people worldwide.

Worryingly, it also causes more than 57,000 emergency admissions to hospital each, according to the Royal College of Nursing.

Despite being only 26 years old, Joanne Rumbellow, from London, felt constantly tired.

The freelance Interior Designer found it “really hard” to concentrate when she was at work and often found herself unable to focus on tasks she used to do easily before. 

Joanne said: “I’m usually a pretty active person and enjoy exercising but I had no energy to do much besides travelling to and from work and would immediately crash when I got home.”

This wasn’t the first time these symptoms took over the 26-year-old’s energy levels as she has suffered from iron deficiency in the past.

Necessary for maintaining healthy cells, skin, hair and nails, iron is crucial for many bodily functions, including the production of haemoglobin.

Worryingly, severe iron deficiency can hike your risk of developing complications that affect the heart or lungs, such as an abnormally fast heartbeat (tachycardia) or heart failure, according to the NHS.

Just like in Joanne’s case, tell-tale signs of this deficiency often start with unexplained fatigue.

According to American Society of Hematology, other key symptoms of iron deficiency include:

  • Being pale or having yellow “sallow” skin
  • Unexplained fatigue or lack of energy
  • Shortness of breath or chest pain, especially with activity
  • Unexplained generalized weakness
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Pounding or “whooshing” in the ears
  • Headache, especially with activity
  • Craving for ice or clay – “picophagia”
  • Sore or smooth tongue
  • Brittle nails or hair loss.

Joanne tried to book a doctor’s appointment but she was told she needed to wait over six weeks for one as her symptoms didn’t seem like an emergency.

“I didn’t want to take an earlier appointment away from someone who may need it more, so I had no choice but to wait for the earliest available appointment,” she said.

However, she felt a bit worried and decided to look up “how to check if you’re iron deficient at home”, when an at-home test came up.

The 26-year-old said: “I must admit I tend to be a bit of a hypochondriac and the fact that I had to wait six weeks before seeing the doctor made my worries increase, given it could be possible that my symptoms were due to something else.”

Joanne ended up taking the Newfoundland Iron Deficiency at-home test from Tesco which showed she had an abnormal reading.

“I get a weekly delivery through Tesco anyway, so I thought there’s no harm in just adding it in, as it was only £8,” she added.

Following the abnormal reading from the test, she fortunately managed to get in to see her doctor within two weeks.

When she explained her symptoms and showed them the results, she was sent for a blood test straight away that confirmed that she was low in iron and needed to be put on medication to bring her levels back to normal.

Joanne added: “I was prescribed iron supplements, which I’ve been taking for a few months now to get my levels back up again. I still have a few months to go, but I feel so much better and back to my old energetic self. 

“I feel like I’m back to living my life to the fullest at work, socially with my friends and family and running and going to the gym.”

Source: | This article first appeared on Express.co.uk

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