Diagnosing anaemia

Regular blood tests can help catch anaemia early and ensure treatment is provided as soon as possible. Nutritional and macrocytic anaemia can be caused by a deficiency of vitamin B12 or Folate.  

People with an illness that puts them at risk of anaemia, such as type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure, or if they are suffering from any of the possible symptoms of anaemia, including extreme tiredness, should speak to their doctor.

Anaemia is diagnosed using a test that measures the level of haemoglobin – the protein in red blood cells that binds oxygen and colours blood red – in the blood. A person is considered to be anaemic if their haemoglobin level is below 11 g/dl (Source:World Health Organization). 

Normal levels of haemoglobin are 12–16 grams per decilitre(g/dl) of blood in healthy women and 14–18 g/dl in men.