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What are the symptoms of G6PD deficiency?

People with G6PD deficiency don't show symptoms until their red blood cells begin to break down, a process called hemolysis. At that point, they display symptoms of hemolysis, not of the deficiency itself. These side effects include fever, paleness, dark-colored urine, yellowish skin (a condition called jaundice), general tiredness, and increases in both heartbeat and the rate of breathing. A physical exam might also reveal that the spleen has become larger.

Most people don’t have noticeable symptoms, meaning it does not usually interfere with everyday life. Some people can have hemolytic anemia (where the red blood cells are destroyed and not reproduced), they can be pale (in people of dark skin, it’s mostly around the mouth, lips or tongue), extreme tiredness, rapid heartbeat along with rapid breathing or shortness of breath, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), dark colored urine. If the spleen is checked, it can be enlarged.

These are the most common symptoms, if you end up having symptoms. Always remember to have your symptoms evaluated by a medical professional.

Continue Learning about Immune & Lymphatic System Disorders

Immune & Lymphatic System Disorders

The lymphatic system is a key part of the immune system, draining excess fluid from bodily tissues and organs and disseminating white blood cells to fight infection. The white blood cells fight infection in the spleen and special ...

vessels throughout the body called lymph nodes. If your immune system becomes compromised, the lymphatic system wont be able to work properly, causing swelling from a buildup of fluid in parts of the body. Disorders of the lymphatic system include elephantiasis, a swelling of body parts caused by a filarial worm infestation, and lymphedema, a swelling in the arms or legs caused by lymph nodes or lymph vessels disturbed by surgery for breast or prostate cancer. Medication, massage therapy and compression garments can help.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.