Microcytic hypochromic anemia.
- serum ferritin <10ng/ml in woman and <20ng/ml in men indicates decreased iron stores. However, since ferritin is an acute phase reactant it may rise in patients with iron deficiency anemia. If level is >200ng/ml this excludes the diagnosis of iron deficiency anemia.
- Serum iron of <50ug/dl and total iron binding capacity of >420ug/dl supports the diagnosis.
- bone marrow biopsy with absent staining for iron is the definitive diagnosis but is used only when serum ferritin fails to confirm a diagnosis.