Megaloblastic anemia


You are in a sub-topic of the anemia section. General information on the topic can be found at: Anemia


The megaloblastic anemia belong to the hyperchromic anemia and are the result of one Vitamin deficiency, abnormal vitamin metabolism, or other DNA synthesis disorders.
Above all, that is affected DNA Synthesis and thus the maturation of the nucleus, which in turn leads to large precursor cells in the Bone marrow supplies. The cells of the peripheral blood are also affected.

Vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B 12 is an important vitamin in the formation of red blood cells (erythropoiesis). As a co-enzyme, it functions in DNA synthesis.
The daily requirement is 1 - 2 µg. The body can store this vitamin in the liver. The memory size is around 2 - 4 µg.
The vitamin is absorbed through food and is particularly abundant in foods such as dairy products and meat. In order to be able to be absorbed through the small intestine, the vitamin needs a special factor, the intrinsic factor. This is formed by the parietal cells of the stomach.

Read more on this topic at:

  • Vitamin B 12 deficiency
  • Vitamin B12

Folic acid deficiency

Folic acid is another important vitamin that is required for the formation of DNA. It is also known as vitamin B9 or vitamin M.
Like vitamin B 12, the body cannot produce folic acid itself.

So it has to be taken in through food. Certain medications can impair the absorption of folic acid.
The daily requirement is around 50-100 µg.
The body has only a small amount of memory (5 - 20 mg), so that it is already exhausted after about 4 months. Folic acid deficiency is often caused by pregnancy or alcohol abuse.

For more information, read on: Folic Acid Deficiency Anemia.


The therapy depends on the various causes of anemia.

  • Substitution of iron, vitamins, intrinsic factor, etc.
  • Eliminate source of bleeding (e.g. treatment of tumors and ulcers)
  • Treat infections
  • Abstinence from triggering factors such as chemicals, pesticides, certain drugs, etc.
  • Giving foreign blood (transfusion)