Q. Can allergy or breathing problem be a cause for elevated hemoglobin levels?

Answered by
Dr. Goswami Parth Rajendragiri
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 28, 2023

Hi doctor,

This is for my son, who is 18 years old. He was identified as having mild anemia when he was 12 years old. The doctor who was consulted suggested him to take iron supplements, and he recovered. In the past, he had eczema as well. It was very severe when he was a child. Later, when he grew older, the itching stopped. He has been in college and away from home for the last year. He has developed breathing problems and a little bit of itching, mostly under the knee joints. His breathing problems have been treated with a Salbutamol inhaler. Almost six months above, his blood test shows a hemoglobin count of 16. His haemoglobin count showed a little increase to 17.1 last week, while his high density lipoprotein count dropped to 30 from 38 the week before. His allergy test, which was over 500 ml, was also taken.

So is his allergy or breathing problem the reason for this hemoglobin increase? I already did research online and see that body is trying to compensate for chronically low blood oxygen levels due to poor heart or lung function.So instead of long theories, given my son's blood results above, is his allergy or breathing issue the reason for this? Is there a relation between elevated allerge ige or immunoglobuline ige and high hemoglobin count? We consulted a doctor, who said the count was close to the border. So make some blood donation, and it should be fine. But I am not sure, and I am concerned. Please advise.



Welcome to

Thank you for your query.

Your child can have asthma or allergic upper respiratory tract infection due to allergy problems. It is a type one hypersensitivity problem in which, because of allergic stimulation, dyspnea occurs by bronchoconstriction. IgE (Immunoglobulin E) level is raised in allergic type 1 hypersensitivity. So it is raised in your child. I advise getting spirometry, a pulmonary function test, and an outpatient department procedure done to investigate your condition. It will aid in determining the appropriate management strategy and assessing severity. If your child have frequent asthma attacks, your doctor may prescribe medication for maintenance dose inhalers such as the Formoterol and Budesonide combination. In addition, the Montelukast Fexofenedine combination medicine may be prescribed as an antiallergic therapy to reduce IgE (immunoglobulin E) levels and improve clinical conditions.Your hemoglobin is slightly high because of asthma, like your child's respiratory problem. Asthma will gradually become less severe as it is controlled. Hematocrit and haemoglobin blood test levels are not elevated and the results are borderline, so there is no need to be concerned. Consult a pulmonologist for spirometry, discuss with them, and take the medication with their consent.

Please follow up for further assistance.

Thank you.

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