Treatment of hemolytic anemia varies depending on its cause and may include:
- Increases hemoglobin or red blood cells
- Taken orally in liquid or pill form every day or every other day in divided doses
- sSde effects may include: upset stomach, increased appetite, weight gain, unstable blood sugars, increased blood pressure, decreased height and increased risk for infection
- Dose is often low enough that few or no side effects occur
Red blood cell transfusions:
- Used when anemia is unusually severe or when steroid therapy is not effective
- Red blood cells are delivered through a needle or catheter inserted into a vein.
- Given at hospital or outpatient transfusion center
- Transfusions typically take two to four hours and may be repeated every four to eight weeks.
- Side effects may include: fever, headache, hives, allergic reaction, infection and iron overload
Intravenous immune globulin:
- Human blood product that strengthens the immune system
- Given through a needled inserted into a vein
- Temporary side effects include: mild anemia, fever, chills, headache, blood pressure changes or allergic reactions
If your child has severe hemolytic anemia, the following treatments, usually given while in the hospital, may be needed:
- Exchange transfusion to replace damaged blood with fresh blood
- Surgery to remove the spleen (usually reserved for children who do not respond to other therapies)
- Immunosuppressive therapy (therapy to suppress the immune system)
Hematolytic Anemia Treatment at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's
Patients with Hematolytic Anemia are treated through the Hematolytic Anemia Program at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, an integrated pediatric hematology and oncology partnership between Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Children’s Hospital.