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Hb, Blood Pigment

Hemoglobin

Hemoglobin is the red blood cell protein that carries oxygen to the tissues and is responsible for the red colour of blood. A deficiency in hemoglobin and in red blood cells (anemia) is manifested by weakness or fatigue, lack of energy, fainting, paleness and shortness of breath. Conversely, excess hemoglobin and red blood cells (polyglobulia) can manifest as vision problems, dizziness, headache, flushing, etc. People who live in higher altitudes generally have higher hemoglobin levels, whereas levels tend to be slightly lower in older men, women, children and pregnant women.

Hemoglobin results are interpreted in light of other blood count parameters (see sections on red blood cells, platelets, MCV).

Term of the Week

Hot zone

A hot zone is a section of a facility (sometimes an entire facility or even a city district) where there is a high risk of contamination by patients with an infectious disease. All individuals entering a hot zone must respect appropriate protective measures. By analogy, “cold zone” and “warm zone” are used to refer to areas where there is no infected individual or only individuals suspected of having an infection.