Aplastic Anemia: Symptoms

What are the symptoms of aplastic anemia?

The symptoms of aplastic anemia are caused by low blood cell counts. The symptoms depend on which type of blood cell is affected.

Low red blood cell count

A low red blood cell count is called anemia. Red blood cells carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. The most common symptom of a low red blood cell count is fatigue (tiredness).  A low red blood cell count also can cause shortness of breath; dizziness, especially when standing up; headaches; coldness in your hands or feet; pale skin; and chest pain.

Low white blood cell count

A low white blood cell count is called neutropenia. White blood cells fight infections in the body by attacking and killing bacteria and viruses. A low white blood cell count can increase the risk for infections.

Low platelet count

A low platelet count is called thrombocytopenia. Platelets help blood to clot and stop bleeding. A low platelet count can lead to bleeding problems and cause you to bruise easily.

Common types of bleeding associated with a low platelet count include nosebleeds, bleeding gums, pinpoint red spots on the skin, and blood in the stool. Women also may have heavy menstrual bleeding.

Learn more about the symptoms of low blood counts.