Speaking to Lusa, João Mairos, president of the Anemia Working Group Portugal — Portuguese Association for the Study of Anaemia, recalled that 20% of Portuguese adults suffer from anaemia and 32% from ferropenia (iron deficiency), regretting that “the greatness of the numbers is not proportionate to the concern.”

The president of the association said that the numbers show that it is “a public health problem” and acknowledged that one of the biggest problems is “the lack of awareness of health professionals and the Portuguese population”.

“It is necessary to continue to alert about the high prevalence known in adulthood and to place, as a focus of clinical practice, the importance of early diagnosis of anaemia and iron deficiency, especially in groups of people at greater risk”, said the official, giving the example of women, pregnant women, the elderly, patients with heart failure, renal failure, and cancer patients.

The president of the Anaemia Working Group Portugal (AWGP) recalled that having anaemia can imply several complications in underlying diseases and defended that people should be aware of symptoms such as fatigue, easy tiredness, low energy, pallor, and brittle nails and hair, which “are often undervalued”.