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November 1987

Pernicious Anemia in Latin Americans Is Not a Disease of the Elderly

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, University of Southern California, and the Los Angeles County-University of Southern California Medical Center, Los Angeles.

Arch Intern Med. 1987;147(11):1995-1996. doi:10.1001/archinte.1987.00370110123018

• Pernicious anemia is widely regarded as a disease of the elderly. However, it is expressed differently in black women, among the most striking differences being their younger age at presentation of the disease compared with whites. We now compared 92 Latin-American patients with 115 white and 100 black patients to see if similar age differences occur in other racial groups. Latin-American men and women were both significantly younger than white men and women, and were similar in age to blacks. Only 21% of Latin-American patients were 70 years of age or older, compared with 49% of whites. it is apparent that pernicious anemia is indeed predominantly a disease of the elderly in whites but that this is not the case in other racial groups.

(Arch Intern Med 1987;147:1995-1996)