What are the signs and symptoms of iron deficiency anemia?

Updated: Sep 07, 2019
  • Author: James L Harper, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Patients with iron deficiency anemia may report the following:

  • Fatigue and diminished capability to perform hard labor

  • Leg cramps on climbing stairs

  • Craving ice (in some cases, cold celery or other cold vegetables) to suck or chew

  • Poor scholastic performance

  • Cold intolerance

  • Reduced resistance to infection

  • Altered behavior (eg, attention deficit disorder)

  • Dysphagia with solid foods (from esophageal webbing)

  • Worsened symptoms of comorbid cardiac or pulmonary disease

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