New Research Finds More Seniors May Have Hemochromatosis Than Suspected

Home » Blog » Challenging Diseases/illnesses/Conditions » New Research Finds More Seniors May Have Hemochromatosis Than Suspected

Over 500,000 men and women took part in a health study in the United Kingdom. That field was narrowed down to 2,900 participants between the ages of 40 and 70. Of those, they found that 22 percent of the men and 10 percent of the women had a genetic condition called hemochromatosis.

These percentages were much higher than expected. It’s led to concerns that hemochromatosis is happening more in people of European descent than originally believed.

Home Care Services Wooster OH - New Research Finds More Seniors May Have Hemochromatosis Than Suspected

Home Care Services Wooster OH – New Research Finds More Seniors May Have Hemochromatosis Than Suspected

What is Hemochromatosis?

Hemochromatosis is a blood disease that is genetic. It’s present in 1 million men and women in the U.S. Upwards of 16 million are believed to have some level of hemochromatosis and not know it.

The body works hard to limit the amount of iron taken from the foods that are eaten each day. Typically, around 10 percent of the iron is absorbed. Hemochromatosis leads to issues processing the iron.

Around four times more of the iron that’s eaten is absorbed and leads to an overdose of iron that affects several organs or parts of the body. Typically, hemochromatosis negatively affects several joints, the heart, the liver, and the pituitary glands.

This excess iron can lead to cirrhosis, irregular heart rhythms, dementia-like symptoms, depression, and certain cancers. The disease is more prevalent in Caucasians of European descent.

Symptoms of Hemochromatosis

People with hemochromatosis have a variety of symptoms. The first noticeable one is pain in the joints of the middle and index fingers. The sensation of skipped or fluttering heartbeats, loss of energy, pain in the abdomen, and brain fogs are others.

How is Hemochromatosis Treated?

If it is found, bloodletting is the only effective treatment. Enough blood is removed to get iron levels back to the normal range. Per the Iron Disorders Institute, removing approximately one unit of blood reduces iron levels by 30ng/mL. Once levels are normal, maintenance requires blood removal every three months on average.

Your parent would need someone to drive them to appointments and spend time with them after the blood is removed. Home care services providers are helpful on treatment days.

Why is Hemochromatosis so Concerning?

The study found a few other patterns. People with hemochromatosis had higher rates of arthritis, diabetes, and liver disease. Rheumatoid arthritis was one of the two common forms of arthritis found in people with hemochromatosis.

Seniors with hemochromatosis often require some assistance while aging at home. They need help with appointments, transportation, and assistance with meals if arthritis is present.

If your mom or dad is struggling to cook healthy meals, remember to take medications each day, or can’t drive safely, home care services ease worries. Rather than missing days of work to meet your parents’ needs, caregivers can step in and help out. Call our home care services agency to discuss these and other ways caregivers help seniors age at home.


If you are considering Home Care Services in Wooster OH, call the caring staff at Central Star Home Health at (419) 610-2161.  Providing services for families in Mansfield, Lexington, Bellville, Mt. Gilead, Loudonville, Crestline, Galion, Shelby, Ashland, Wooster, and the surrounding areas.
About the author: Stephen Sternbach
Stephen Sternbach has been the Chairman of the Board of Directors, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Star Multi Care Services since 1987. After the sale of the New York and New Jersey operations of Star Multi Care Services, Sternbach brought the company private where he remains President and CEO of this newly developed $22M home healthcare company. With Sternbach at the helm, Star Multi Care Services employs more than 550 employees, in six offices throughout Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio and New York. From 1978 to 1986, Sternbach was associated with Automated Data Processing, Inc. (“ADP”)–a provider of information services, where he held several marketing positions before becoming the Director of Sales. 1999-2008 Sternbach was an active participant on the Board of Directors for Proginet–a computer software company based in Garden City, New York. He also served on the Board of Trustees of the Long Island Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society from 1996-2002. In 1996, Stephen Sternbach was named “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young, Paine Webber and NASDAQ. Sternbach was also named in Crain’s New York Business Article, “40 Under 40” Successful Business Executives/Future Business Leaders in 1995. While maintaining a diversity of business and personal interests, Sternbach concentrated most of his efforts over the past 28 years towards continuously improving the quality of services delivered by the Star Multi Care Services’ family of companies. Stephen Sternbach holds a Master of Public Administration from Syracuse University – Maxwell School of Public Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Industrial Relations and Personnel Administration from Ithaca College.