Health Library

The Health Library is a collection of health and wellness resources created for learning and accessibility. Select a topic below for related health information or search for a topic in the search bar for more information on other medical conditions.

Hematology

  • Discusses folate deficiency anemia. Discusses role that folate plays in making red blood cells. Covers symptoms and complications of anemia. Covers treatment with diet and daily supplement. Offers list of foods that provide folate.

  • What is deep vein thrombosis? Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a blood clot (thrombus) in a deep vein, usually in the legs. Clots can form in superficial veins and in deep veins. Blood clots with inflammation in superficial veins (called superficial thrombophlebitis or phlebitis) rarely cause serious problems. But clots...

  • Learn how to prevent blood clots in leg veins when you must sit or lie down for long periods of time.

  • Having anemia means you don't have enough red blood cells. Your body needs these cells to carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. Sometimes a long-term disease keeps your body from making enough red blood cells. This is called anemia...

  • Learn what an anticoagulant (blood thinner) shot is, and see how to give yourself an injection.

  • Anemia means that you do not have enough red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen from your lungs to your body's tissues. If your tissues and organs do not get enough oxygen, they cannot work as well as they should. Anemia is common in people...

  • Learn what to expect and how to care for yourself after a bone marrow transplant.

  • Find out how a bone marrow stem cell transplant replaces damaged cells with healthy ones.

  • Find out what to do if your baby has jaundice.

  • Learn all about a blood transfusion: what it is, why it's done, what the risks are, and how to care for yourself at home.

  • Learn what acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is and what to expect for care and treatment.

  • Learn about some of the treatment options for childhood leukemia.

  • Find out how to work effectively with your child's care team to get answers and support.

  • Learn what acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) is and what to expect for care and treatment.

  • Learn how to care for your IV site.

  • Discusses how and why bruises and blood spots might develop. Offers checklist to help you decide when to call a doctor. Offers home treatment and prevention tips.

  • Has links on complete blood count, sedimentation rate tests, and anemia. Also includes links to lymph topics such as swollen glands/other lumps under the skin and lymphedema.

  • What is deep vein thrombosis (DVT)? Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a blood clot in a deep vein, usually in a leg. A DVT is dangerous because the clot can break loose, travel through the bloodstream, and block blood flow to the lungs ( pulmonary embolism). Without treatment, this can be deadly. Why does...

  • Blood thinners are medicines that help prevent blood clots. Although they are called blood thinners, they don't really thin the blood. They slow down the time it takes for a blood clot to form. You have to be careful when you take blood thinner medicines. They can raise the risk of serious bleeding. But you can do...

  • What is sickle cell trait? Sickle cell trait occurs when a person inherits a sickle cell gene from just one parent. It's not the same as sickle cell disease, in which a person inherits two sickle cell genes, one from each parent. People with sickle cell disease have just one kind of hemoglobin (hemoglobin S)...

  • Learn what important blood cells called platelets do.

  • Post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS) is a complication of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), or deep vein blood clot. After a while, this blood clot (usually in your leg), can damage the vein. Damage to the vein can lead to more pressure in the veins. The...

  • Lymphomas are either Hodgkin lymphomas or non-Hodgkin lymphomas. Hodgkin lymphomas have a type of cell called Reed-Sternberg cells. Lymphomas without these cells are non-Hodgkin lymphomas. This topic is about Hodgkin lymphoma. To learn about...

  • Learn what you can do to be safe when you're taking warfarin.

  • Learn why you need to keep taking warfarin and how to get help so you can keep taking it.

  • Learn what can cause a DVT, why it's so dangerous, and what the symptoms are.

  • Learn how clot-busting medicines are used for emergencies like stroke and heart attack.

  • Learn how to help prevent dangerous blood clots after your surgery.

  • Neutropenia (say "noo-truh-PEE-nee-uh") means that your blood has too few white blood cells called neutrophils. White blood cells are an important part of your body's immune system. Neutrophils help protect your body from infection by killing...

  • Having anemia means you don't have enough red blood cells. Your body needs these cells to carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. Anemia is fairly common. It's often easily treated. Sometimes, though, it's serious. There are three...

  • Thrombocytopenia (say "throm-buh-sy-tuh-PEE-nee-uh") is a low number of platelets in the blood. Platelets are the cells that help blood clot. If you don't have enough of them, your blood can't clot well. That means it's harder to stop bleeding. You...

  • Anemia during a healthy pregnancy is common. Anemia means your red blood cell level is low. It can happen when you're pregnant because your body is working hard to make more blood to help your baby grow. Sometimes anemia during pregnancy can be...

  • Lymph nodes are small, bean-shaped glands throughout the body. They are part of the lymph system, which carries fluid (lymph fluid), nutrients, and waste material between the body tissues and the bloodstream. The lymph system is an important part of...

  • How can I care for myself? If you have hemophilia, you can take steps at home to prevent bleeding episodes and improve your health. Recognize bleeding symptoms. Be active, but exercise with care. Don't take nonprescription medicines unless your doctor tells you to. Prevent injuries and...

  • About 1 out of 3 people with lupus produce an antibody that attacks certain blood-clotting factors, which can cause the blood to clot easily. A person who has this antibody and has had blood clots is said to have antiphospholipid antibody syndrome. This can lead to mild or severe blood-clotting complications, including...

  • Jaundice is a yellow tint to a newborn's skin and the white part of the eyes. It is a sign that there's too much bilirubin in the baby's blood. The word for having too much bilirubin in the blood is hyperbilirubinemia (say...

  • Covers iron deficiency anemia. Explains role of iron in making hemoglobin, part of red blood cells. Covers causes and symptoms. Includes info on tests used to diagnose anemia. Discusses foods that may help prevent anemia. Covers treatment with medicines.

  • Hemochromatosis happens when too much iron builds up in the body. Your body needs iron to make hemoglobin, the part of your blood that carries oxygen to all of your cells. But when there is too much iron, it can damage the liver and heart and lead...

  • What is von Willebrand's disease? Von Willebrand's disease is a bleeding disorder. When you have this disease, it takes longer for your blood to form clots, so you bleed for a longer time than other people. Normally, when a person begins to bleed, small blood cells called platelets go to the site of the bleeding and...

  • What is thalassemia? Thalassemia (say "thal-uh-SEE-mee-uh") is an inherited blood disorder that causes your body to make less hemoglobin or abnormal hemoglobin. Hemoglobin helps red blood cells spread oxygen through your body. Low levels of hemoglobin may cause anemia, an illness that makes you feel weak and tired...

  • Hemophilia can be treated by replacing missing blood clotting factors. This is called clotting factor replacement therapy. Clotting factors are replaced by injecting (infusing) a clotting factor concentrate into a vein. Infusions of clotting factors help blood to clot normally. Clotting factor replacement therapy can...

  • Learn what hemophilia is, what can cause it, and what treatment is needed.

  • A bone biopsy is a procedure in which a small sample of bone is taken from the body and looked at under a microscope for cancer, infection, or other bone disorders. The sample of bone can be removed by: Inserting a needle through the skin and directly into the bone ( closed or needle biopsy). A numbing medicine (...

  • Bone marrow aspiration is a procedure that takes out a small amount of bone marrow fluid through a needle. Bone marrow biopsy uses a needle to take out a small amount of bone with the marrow inside it. These samples are then checked under a microscope. The hip bone is the most often used area for these procedures...

  • People who have sickle cell disease can sometimes have vision problems. Blood cells that change shape, or "sickle," can get trapped in blood vessels, blocking the blood flow. When this blockage occurs in the small blood vessels in the inner lining...

  • A sickle cell crisis is a painful episode that may begin suddenly in a person who has sickle cell disease. A sickle cell crisis occurs when sickle-shaped red blood cells clump together and block small blood vessels that carry blood to certain...

  • If a person with sickle cell disease is infected with parvovirus, the virus that causes fifth disease in children, an aplastic crisis may develop. Bone marrow suddenly stops producing red blood cells, which results in sudden and severe anemia....

  • Splenic sequestration is a problem with the spleen that can happen in people who have sickle cell disease. Splenic sequestration happens when a lot of sickled red blood cells become trapped in the spleen. The spleen can enlarge, get damaged, and not...

  • Stem cell transplantation is a potential cure for sickle cell disease. Stem cells can be found in bone marrow. Bone marrow is the substance in the center of your bones that produces red blood cells. A person with sickle cell disease has bone marrow that produces red blood cells with defective hemoglobin S. But if that...

  • Describes sickle cell disease. Covers causes and symptoms. Discusses how it is diagnosed. Covers treatment as the disease progresses, including with surgery or medicines like hydroxyurea. Offers home treatment tips.

  • A sickle cell test is a blood test done to check for sickle cell trait or sickle cell disease. Sickle cell disease is an inherited blood disease that causes red blood cells to be deformed ( sickle-shaped). The red blood cells deform because they contain an abnormal type of hemoglobin, called hemoglobin S, instead of the...

  • Gives info on heart problem that leads to heart failure. Includes symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment with medicines, lifestyle changes, and surgery. Also info on causes like amyloidosis, hemochromatosis, and sarcoidosis. Includes info on tests.

  • Discusses vitamin B12 deficiency anemia. Explains role of B12 in red blood cells, which carry oxygen through your body. Covers symptoms and tests used to diagnose. Includes info on treatment with diet and medicines.

  • Discusses possible causes of swollen glands and other lumps under the skin. Covers bacterial and viral infections, noncancerous growths, hernias, aneurysms, and swelling caused by cancer. Includes an interactive tool to help you decide when to call a doctor.

  • Lymphedema is the build-up of fluid in soft body tissues when the lymph system is damaged or blocked. Lymphedema occurs when the lymph system is damaged or blocked. Fluid builds up in soft body tissues and causes swelling. It is a common problem that may be caused by cancer and cancer treatment. Lymphedema usually...

  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the lymph system. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of cancer that forms in the lymph system. The lymph system is part of the immune system. It helps protect the body from infection and disease. The lymph system is made up of the following: Lymph...

  • Adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes too many lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). Adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL; also called acute lymphocytic leukemia) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. This type of cancer usually gets worse quickly if it is...

  • Adult acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes abnormal myeloblasts (a type of white blood cell), red blood cells, or platelets. Adult acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. This type of cancer usually gets worse quickly if it is not treated. It is...

  • Adult Hodgkin lymphoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the lymph system. Adult Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of cancer that develops in the lymph system. The lymph system is part of the immune system. It helps protect the body from infection and disease. The lymph system is made up of the following...

  • Childhood Hodgkin lymphoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the lymph system. Childhood Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of cancer that develops in the lymph system. The lymph system is part of the immune system. It helps protect the body from infection and disease. The lymph system is made up of the...

  • Childhood acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes a large number of abnormal blood cells. Childhood acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. AML is also called acute myelogenous leukemia, acute myeloblastic leukemia, acute granulocytic leukemia, and...

  • Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes too many immature lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (also called ALL or acute lymphocytic leukemia) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. This type of cancer usually gets...

  • Childhood non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the lymph system. Childhood non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of cancer that forms in the lymph system, which is part of the body's immune system. It helps protect the body from infection and disease. The lymph system is made up of...

  • Chronic lymphocytic leukemia is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes too many lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (also called CLL) is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow that usually gets worse slowly. CLL is one of the most common types of leukemia in adults. It often...

  • Chronic myelogenous leukemia is a disease in which the bone marrow makes too many white blood cells. Chronic myelogenous leukemia (also called CML or chronic granulocytic leukemia) is a slowly progressing blood and bone marrow disease that usually occurs during or after middle age, and rarely occurs in children. Anatomy...

  • Hairy cell leukemia is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes too many lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). Hairy cell leukemia is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. This rare type of leukemia gets worse slowly or does not get worse at all. The disease is called hairy cell leukemia because the leukemia...

  • Plasma cell neoplasms are diseases in which the body makes too many plasma cells. Plasma cells develop from B lymphocytes (B cells), a type of white blood cell that is made in the bone marrow. Normally, when bacteria or viruses enter the body, some of the B cells will change into plasma cells. The plasma cells make...

  • Myeloproliferative neoplasms are a group of diseases in which the bone marrow makes too many red blood cells, white blood cells, or platelets. Normally, the bone marrow makes blood stem cells (immature cells) that become mature blood cells over time. Anatomy of the bone. The bone is made up of compact bone, spongy bone...

  • Myelodysplastic syndromes are a group of cancers in which immature blood cells in the bone marrow do not mature or become healthy blood cells. In a healthy person, the bone marrow makes blood stem cells (immature cells) that become mature blood cells over time. Anatomy of the bone. The bone is made up of compact bone...

  • Myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasms are a group of diseases in which the bone marrow makes too many white blood cells. Myelodysplastic /myeloproliferative neoplasms are diseases of the blood and bone marrow. Anatomy of the bone. The bone is made up of compact bone, spongy bone, and bone marrow. Compact bone...

  • What is a blood transfusion? Blood transfusion is a medical treatment that replaces blood lost through injury, surgery, or disease. The blood goes through a tube from a bag to an intravenous (IV) catheter and into your vein. When is a blood transfusion needed? You may need a blood transfusion if you lose too much...

  • Guides through decision to bank blood before having surgery. Explains how banking blood before surgery can protect from a bad reaction to a blood transfusion. Covers benefits and risks. Includes an interactive tool to help you make your decision.

  • What is lymphedema? Lymphedema is a collection of fluid that causes swelling (edema) in the arms and legs. What causes lymphedema? One of the causes of lymphedema is surgery to remove lymph nodes, usually during cancer treatment. Normally, lymph nodes filter fluid as it flows through them, trapping bacteria, viruses...

  • Pain is a long-lasting problem for people who have sickle cell disease. Bouts of severe pain can last for hours to days and are difficult to treat. Pain can be exhausting for caregivers as well as for the person in pain. A pain management plan can help a person cope with chronic pain and with pain caused by a sickle...

  • During a blood transfusion, a person (the recipient) receives healthy blood from another person (the donor). The donated blood is carefully screened for diseases before it is used. Before receiving a blood transfusion, the recipient's blood is analyzed closely (using blood type) to make sure the donor blood is a close...

  • Some people inherit one sickle cell gene and one other defective hemoglobin gene, resulting in various types of sickling disorders. These disorders range from mild to severe. Sickle cell disease (hemoglobin SS disease) occurs when both genes produce hemoglobin S. This person typically has...

  • Antiphospholipid syndrome is a rare autoimmune disease that has been closely linked to some cases of recurrent miscarriage. This syndrome increases blood clotting. It can cause dangerous blood clots (thrombosis) and problems with blood flow. For some women, the only sign of this condition is an early miscarriage. Or...

  • Discusses non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, cancer of the cells of the lymph system. Covers what causes it and symptoms. Covers treatment, including chemotherapy. Offers home treatment tips to help manage side effects like diarrhea and fatigue.

  • Watchful waiting (surveillance) is a period in the treatment of some types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in which you are not having treatment. It does not mean that your doctors are giving up or refusing to give you treatment. During this time, you...

  • Most stem cells are in your bone marrow. You also have some in your blood that circulate from your bone marrow. Bone marrow stem cells turn into red blood cells, white blood cells, or platelets to help your body stay healthy. If your bone marrow is...

  • Radiation therapy is the use of high-dose X-rays to destroy cancer cells. Radiation therapy is often used for the treatment of cancer, such as non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), Hodgkin lymphoma, and all types of leukemia. Radiation therapy may be used...

  • What is leukemia? Leukemia is cancer of the blood cells. It starts in the bone marrow, the soft tissue inside most bones. Bone marrow is where blood cells are made. White blood cells help your body fight infection. Red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of your body. Platelets...

  • Hemochromatosis gene (HFE) testing is a blood test used to check for hereditary hemochromatosis, an inherited disorder that causes the body to absorb too much iron. The iron then builds up in the blood, liver, heart, pancreas, joints, skin, and other organs. In its early stages, hemochromatosis can cause joint and...

  • Discusses screening test for hereditary hemochromatosis, a genetic disorder that causes the body to absorb too much iron. Covers symptoms of hereditary hemochromatosis. Discusses who should be screened and offers reasons not to be screened.

  • What is a stem cell transplant? Most stem cells are in your bone marrow. You also have some that circulate from your marrow into your blood. Bone marrow stem cells turn into red blood cells, white blood cells, or platelets to help your body stay healthy. If your bone marrow is damaged or destroyed, it can no longer...

  • In some women, the estrogen in combination hormonal birth control methods increases the risk of a blood clot in a leg ( deep vein thrombosis, or DVT) or a blood clot in a lung ( pulmonary embolism, or PE). A blood clot in a leg vein can travel through the circulation system and cause pulmonary embolism. The risk for...

  • Discusses primary cause (blood clot in the lungs) and symptoms of pulmonary embolism. Looks at treatment with thrombolytic medicines, blood thinners (anticoagulants), or surgery. Links to info on complications like pulmonary hypertension.

  • Blood clots can happen in veins. A blood clot in a vein close to the skin isn't likely to cause problems. But having blood clots in deep veins is called deep vein thrombosis. Deep vein thrombosis happens most often in the legs. This problem can lead to a blood clot in the lung ( pulmonary embolism). The deep veins of...

  • Splenectomy is surgery to remove the spleen. The spleen gets rid of old and damaged red blood cells. Red blood cells may be damaged by a health condition, such as thalassemia or sickle cell disease. When the blood cells pass through the spleen, they are often destroyed. This can leave the body with too few red blood...

  • What is blood donation? Blood donation is giving some of your blood so that it can be used to help someone else. Donated blood helps people who have lost blood in an accident or who have an illness such as cancer, anemia, sickle cell disease, or hemophilia. Donated blood includes red blood cells and the other...

  • Acquired von Willebrand disease is a rare bleeding disorder that might be caused by other medical problems or medicines. It prevents blood from clotting properly. It is rarer than the inherited form of von Willebrand disease. Medical problems that might cause acquired von Willebrand disease include: Lymph disorders...

  • Home treatment for sickle cell disease includes steps you can take not only to control pain symptoms but also to prevent some of the complications caused by the disease. These complications include painful sickle cell crises. Have a pain management plan If you and your doctor have developed a pain...

  • Phlebotomy is a procedure that removes blood from the body. Regular phlebotomy treats people who have too much iron in their blood, such as with hemochromatosis, or who are producing too many red blood cells, such as with polycythemia. Removing blood regularly decreases iron levels in the body by reducing the number of...

  • What are the most common skin conditions in newborns? It's very common for newborns to have rashes or other skin problems. Some of them have long names that are hard to say and sound scary. But most will go away on their own in a few days or weeks. Here are some of the things you may notice about your baby's skin...

  • Discusses steps to avoid swelling from lymphedema if you've had lymph nodes removed or had radiation, especially for cancer. Covers how to prevent infection. Includes exercise to help circulation. Includes care of affected arm or leg, and skin and nails.

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