What is hereditary hemochromatosis?

Hereditary hemochromatosis is a genetic disorder in which the body absorbs too much iron from the food a person eats. This extra iron is kept in the body's organs, like skin, heart, liver, pancreas and joints. A person affected by hemochromatosis cannot effectively eliminate iron in the body, so excess iron is stored. Over time this may lead to symptoms such as fatigue, joint pain, and abdominal pain. Hemochromatosis can also lead to life-threatening conditions, such as liver disease, health problems and diabetes.

SOURCE: Emory University - Department of Human Genetics in collaboration with ThinkGenetic • https://www.thinkgenetic.com/diseases/235200-hemochromatosis-6684/overview/6666 • DATE UPDATED: 2016-06-14

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