This blood disorder is characterized by larger than normal red blood cells. Abnormal precursors of red blood cells, called megaloblasts (from the Greek root meaning "big cell buds") occur in bone marrow and give this anemia its name. Megaloblastic anemia commonly results from a deficiency in Vitamin B12 or folic acid (also known as folate). It can also be caused by leukemia, multiple myeloma, certain hereditary disorders, and some chemotherapy agents. The most common type of megaloblastic anemia is pernicious anemia.
Source: AMA Complete Encyclopedia, Copyright 2003, American Medical Association
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