Hematology

Hematology

Hematology, also spelled haematology (from the Greek αἷμα haima "blood" and -λoγία), is the branch of biology physiology, internal medicine, pathology, clinical laboratory work, and pediatrics that is concerned with the study of blood, the blood-forming organs, and blood diseases. Hematology includes the study of etiology, diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and prevention of blood diseases. The laboratory work that goes into the study of blood is frequently performed by a medical technologist. Hematologists physicians also very frequently do further study in oncology - the medical treatment of cancer.

Blood diseases affect the production of blood and its components, such as blood cells, hemoglobin, blood proteins, the mechanism of coagulation, etc.

Physicians specialized in hematology are known as hematologists. Their routine work mainly includes the care and treatment of patients with hematological diseases, although some may also work at the hematology laboratory viewing blood films and bone marrow slides under the microscope, interpreting various hematological test results. In some institutions, hematologists also manage the hematology laboratory. Physicians who work in hematology laboratories, and most commonly manage them, are pathologists specialized in the diagnosis of hematological diseases, referred to as hematopathologists. Hematologists and hematopathologists generally work in conjunction to formulate a diagnosis and deliver the most appropriate therapy if needed. Hematology is a distinct subspecialty of internal medicine, separate from but overlapping with the subspecialty of medical oncology. Hematologists may specialize further or have special interests, for example in:

  • treating bleeding disorders such as hemophilia and idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura
  • treating hematological malignacies such as lymphoma and leukemia
  • treating hemoglobinopathies
  • in the science of blood transfusion and the work of a blood bank
  • in bone marrow and stem cell transplantation

Hematology as basic medical science

  • Blood
    • Venous blood
    • Venipuncture
    • Hematopoiesis
    • Blood tests
    • Cord blood
  • Red blood cells
    • Erythropoiesis
    • Erythropoietin
    • Iron metabolism
    • Hemoglobin
    • Glycolysis
    • Pentose phosphate pathway
  • White blood cells
  • Platelets
  • Reticuloendothelial system
    • Bone marrow
    • Spleen
    • Liver
  • Lymphatic system
  • Blood transfusion
    • Blood plasma
    • Blood bank
    • Blood donors
    • Blood groups
  • Hemostasis
    • Coagulation
    • Vitamin K
  • Complement system
    • Immunoglobulins

(abnormality of the hemoglobin molecule or of the rate of hemoglobin synthesis)

  • Anemias (lack of red blood cells or hemoglobin)
  • Hematological malignancies
  • Coagulopathies (disorders of bleeding and coagulation)
  • ...Sickle Cell Anemia
  • ...thalassemia

Treatments

Treatments include:

  • Diet advice
  • Oral medication - tablets or liquid medicines
  • Anticoagulation therapy
  • Intramuscular injections (for example, Vitamin B12 injections)
  • Blood transfusion (for anemia)
  • Venesection also known as therepeutic phlebotomy (for iron overload or polycythemia)
  • Bone marrow transplant (for example, for leukemia)
  • All kinds of anti-cancer chemotherapy
  • Radiotherapy (for example, for cancer)

Alphabetical lists

  • Hematologists
  • Blood disorders
  • Hematology topics
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