How can I help my child deal with this?
The diagnosis of AIHA means that your child’s activities and routines will be disrupted. Your child may feel tired, cranky, angry, and afraid. You and your child are suddenly faced with frequent blood tests, medications, and doctor visits. Truthful, honest communication with your child ensures trust and is usually the best approach. Assure the child that nothing they did caused this problem. Make them feel secure knowing that you and the doctors will be giving them special care to help them get well. Be honest about doctor visits, blood tests and medications needed. Younger children often handle these situations better with shorter notice (the day or morning of a blood test, for example), while older children may want time to prepare themselves. Create a reward system for their cooperation and tolerance of unpleasant tasks associated with having AIHA.
NAMI has recently started endorsing the Partnership
for Prescription Assistance , a new program that seeks to boost
enrollment in existing Patient Assistance Programs by helping consumers
identify and apply for programs for which they may be eligible. This
may be a good place to start if you are unfamiliar with Assistance
Programs that might work for you - however, we don't yet know how
successful the Partnership is at enrolling people in good programs,
or how much they may charge for their service. If anyone has experiences
to share about the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (good or
bad), please email the administration at: szwebmaster@.
Visit their website ( http:// ) or call 1-888-477-2669 if you are interested.
Free information sites about PAPs - include databases searchable by state, medication, or company name
When you look at a blood smear from a patient with cold AIHA, you’ll see big red cell agglutinates (but only if you have smart lab techs who cool the blood down first before making the smear, so you can see the agglutinates! Most lab techs are very smart.) You might see some spherocytes here and there too (because there is a little bit of macrophage nibbling going on) but they are way less numerous than they are in warm AIHA. To prove that your patient’s anemia is, in fact, an autoimmune hemolytic anemia, you need to do a DAT. The DAT will be positive in cold AIHA because the DAT looks for both IgG and complement bound to the patient’s red cells. Good thing they include the complement in the test (if they just included IgG, then cold AIHA cases would have a negative DAT).