Anemia in chronic congestive heart failure: frequency, prognosis, and treatment.

Martino Crosato, Wolfram Steinborn, Stefan D. Anker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chronic heart failure (CHF) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality. Although a precise definition for a cut-off value of hemoglobin level for anemia is still lacking, it has recently been found to be a common complication in CHF, occurring in 10-20% of patients. There are several possible pathogenetic mechanisms for anemia in CHF, and a precise underlying cause is found in only a minority of patients. In CHF, more than 50% of anemia cases are considered to be 'anemia in chronic illness'. In CHF patients, low hemoglobin values directly relate to poor peak oxygen consumption, disabling symptoms, and impaired survival. Recent pilot studies showed that correction of anemia with erythropoietin and iron may lead to improvement in symptoms and exercise capacity. These issues need to be tested in larger, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trials before anemia treatment becomes routine in patients with CHF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-6
Number of pages5
JournalHeart failure monitor
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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