Send to

Choose Destination
Nat Rev Rheumatol. 2013 Apr;9(4):205-15. doi: 10.1038/nrrheum.2012.183. Epub 2012 Nov 13.

Anaemia in inflammatory rheumatic diseases.

Author information

Department of Internal Medicine, Clinical Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Medical University of Innsbruck, Anichstrasse 35, A6020 Innsbruck, Austria.


Anaemia is frequently observed in patients with inflammatory rheumatic diseases. Depending on its severity, anaemia negatively affects cardiovascular performance, physical activity and the quality of life of patients. However, anaemia is considered to be a symptom of the underlying inflammatory disease and, thus, neglected as a complex medical condition that warrants specific diagnosis and treatment. Although inflammation-induced alterations in iron homeostasis and erythropoiesis have a dominant role in the pathogenesis of this type of anaemia, multiple other factors such as chronic blood loss, haemolysis, disease and treatment-associated adverse effects or vitamin deficiencies can also take part in the development of anaemia. Accordingly, the prevalence of anaemia is positively associated with the severity of the underlying disease. This Review will summarize epidemiological data on anaemia in inflammatory rheumatic diseases, along with a detailed description of underlying pathophysiological pathways, available diagnostic tools and practical diagnostic strategies. Discussion of established and newly emerging treatment regimens, as well as the need for further research in this clinically relevant field, will also be included.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center