Acquired sideroblastic anaemias (ASA) are a group of anaemias that results from an impaired production of haemoglobin. It is caused by an impaired synthesis of haem, which is often due to a defect in the enzymes involved in the process. It is most commonly caused by alcohol abuse, but can also be caused by certain drugs, toxins, and certain diseases such as cirrhosis and haemolytic anaemias.
Diagnosis of ASA is based on a combination of clinical presentation, laboratory tests, and imaging studies. The diagnosis is confirmed by a bone marrow biopsy, which shows the presence of ringed sideroblasts in the red blood cell precursors.
Differential diagnosis of ASA includes other forms of anaemias, such as megaloblastic anaemia, haemolytic anaemia, and aplastic anaemia.
Treatment for ASA is focused on treating the underlying cause. If the underlying cause is alcohol abuse, then this should be addressed. In cases where the underlying cause is a medication or toxin, the offending agent should be stopped. In cases where the underlying cause is a disease, the treatment should be focused on managing the condition.
The prognosis of ASA is generally good if the underlying cause is treated. If the underlying cause is not treated, the prognosis is more guarded and patients may require lifelong treatment.