The Symptoms of Acute Anaemia

Great pallor; hollow cheeks; sunken eyes; pinched nose; coldness; dry or clammy skin; frequently a weak pulse, which is easily excited by slight exercise; fainting, or tendency to faint on slight exertion; great weakness; swelling of the feet.

The Cause of Acute Anaemia

The most frequent and almost the only cause of acute anaemia is excessive hemorrhage. The occasion may be a wound of any sort, surgical operations, blood-letting, bursting an air-vessel, nosebleed, hemorrhage from the lungs or from an ulcer in the stomach, as in bloody vomiting. Acute anaemia is distinguished from chronic by its sudden appearance. It may be produced in an hour by sudden hemorrhage or may be two or three days in coming on in consequence of repeated small hemorrhages. The pallor by which it is characterized is peculiar, and gives to the patient a strange appearance, as it often occurs in persons who are quite plump.

The skin of a light-complexioned person acquires a dead, almost ashen appearance. In dark-complexioned people and the dark-skinned races, the color of the skin is darkened rather than lightened by anaemia. The thermometer indicates a considerable fall of temperature, not only externally but internally. Upon placing a stethoscope, or instrument for examining the chest, over the jugular vein, a peculiar sound will be heard, known as the venous hum, or 'bruit de diable,' due to the thinness of the blood. Some of the symptoms noticed, as unnatural pallor immediately resulting from loss of blood, may continue for a long time, and even for months and years.