oa Central African Journal of Medicine - The anaemic heart

Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



(1) Forty male Africans suffering from severe ""tropical"" anaemia were investigated. (2) In 42.5 per cent. the heart was enlarged radiologically, but rarely was the enlargement marked. It was usually mild or moderate. (3) The signs of congestive failure are either minimal or absent. ( 4) Oedema is more often the result of the anaemia and should not by itself be regarded as a sign of congestive failure. (5) The size of the heart is not necessarily related to the extent of the anaemia. (6) The heart which is enlarged either may be slow to resume its former size, despite an appreciable improvement in the blood picture, or it returns to normal proportions within a comparatively short period after treatment has been instituted. (7) More often than not the electrocardiogram is normal and, when abnormal, the changes are mostly slight.

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