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Hb, Blood Pigment


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


A cyst is an abnormal closed sac (benign tumour) in the body that is generally filled with liquid. Depending on the size of the cyst and the nature of the liquid, a cyst puncture may be indicated.