From fatigue to arrhythmia, anemia causes a wide range of symptoms. Understanding your symptoms can help you communicate about your condition with your doctor and loved ones.

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There are many different types of anemia with many different causes. A handful of symptoms are shared by nearly all types of anemia, whether you have iron deficiency anemia or Fanconi anemia.

And each type of anemia shares a basic end effect: Your body does not have enough oxygen-bearing red blood cells for its needs.

How severe or frequent your symptoms are relates to how severe your anemia is. People who have mild anemia, from a mild iron deficiency, for instance, may not have any symptoms at all, while people with severe anemia can have much more noticeable and longer lasting symptoms.

Anemia symptoms include:

Fatigue. This is by far the most common anemia symptom. You may feel very tired or weak and unable to summon the energy for most daily activities.Dizziness. Dizziness is most likely to occur when you stand up from a sitting or resting position.Shortness of breathHeadachesCold skin, especially the hands and feetPaleness. Your gums and the base of your nails may be especially pale.Arrhythmia. Also known as dysrhythmia or an abnormal heart rhythm, an uneven or altered rate or pattern of heartbeats can also result from your heart working harder to circulate blood.

If the condition is severe enough, these symptoms are found to some degree in every type of anemia.

Differentiating Anemia Symptoms

There are many different types of anemia, some with symptoms that set them apart:

Fanconi anemia. This is a rare inherited disorder that prevents your bone marrow from making all three needed types of blood cells and results in delayed development in a multitude of areas, from learning abilities to physical growth.Sickle cell anemia. Sudden pain throughout the body is a hallmark of this type of anemia, which occurs because the body makes red blood cells shaped like sickles (or a “C” shape) instead of smooth disc shapes. These abnormally shaped cells can clump together, blocking blood flow in many organs and causing painful sickle cell crises. Swelling in the hands and feet and damage to the spleen are also symptoms of this type of anemia.

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Symptoms of anemia cover a wide range, depending on the cause of the anemia and the severity of the condition. However, there are a few symptoms, especially tiredness, that occur with all types of anemia. If you suspect you have anemia, talk to your doctor about your options.