Polycythemia is an abnormal increase in the number of red blood
cells produced by the bone marrow. The extra numbers of red blood cells cause
blood to thicken and may increase the risk of blood clots that may cause heart
attacks or strokes.
Treatment for polycythemia (also called erythrocythemia) sometimes
involves removing red blood cells (much like donating blood) from the blood.
But this procedure may decrease iron levels in the body.
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Brian Leber, MDCM, FRCPC - Hematology