The sideroblastic anemias are a group of blood disorders in which the body has enough iron but is unable to use it to make hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in the blood. As a result, iron accumulates in the mitochondria of red blood cells, giving a ringed appearance to the nucleus (ringed sideroblast). There are three categories of sideroblastic anemias: inherited, acquired, and idiopathic (of unknown origin). The signs and symptoms can range from mild to severe, and include fatigue, breathing difficulties, and weakness. Enlargement of the liver or spleen may also occur. In severe cases, the increased levels of iron in the blood may lead to heart disease, liver damage, and kidney failure.
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