Home Products Most Popular Contact
No items in your cart.
The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Hereditary Hemochromatosis. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

Learn more about Hereditary Hemochromatosis (online CE course) »
How to Subscribe
MLS & MLT Comprehensive CE Package
Includes 123 CE courses, most popular
$95 Add to cart
Pick Your Courses
Up to 8 CE hours
$50 Add to cart
Individual course$20 Add to cart

Altered Iron Absorption

HH is a genetic disorder characterized by iron overload as a result of increased dietary iron absorption. Between 3 - 4 mg of iron may be absorbed each day with HH, compared to 1 - 2 mg absorbed normally. As iron absorption increases, the amount of iron bound to transferrin and transported in the plasma subsequently increases.
With no available mechanism for excreting excess absorbed iron, normal iron storage sites become overloaded, resulting in ferritin levels that far exceed normal. As a result, iron is deposited in the parenchymal cells of the liver, pancreas, pituitary, heart, synovium, and other tissues with high concentrations of transferrin receptors. Iron in excess of normal cellular ferritin stores contributes to the generation of free radicals and reactive oxygen intermediates that cause cell damage to organs and tissues. This process results in the clinical condition known as iron overload, a hallmark feature of HH.
Altered iron absorption is also found in other diseases, but a comprehensive discussion is beyond the scope of this unit.