-emia or -aemia

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Both –emia and –aemia mean that there is a certain substance in one’s blood. For example, hypoglycemia (or hypoglycaemia) is the condition of having too little sugar or glucose in one’s blood. This suffix is mainly used in medical terminology. It also has variants of –hemia and -haemia.

All these variants come from the Greek word for blood haima.

The United States and Canada prefer –emia while other English-speaking countries around the world prefer -aemia. Though there is some crossover in each country and the spellings without the are more prevalent overall and most likely will be the preferred in all countries over time.


Around 3,50,000 new cases of leukaemia are reported each year worldwide. [The Hindu]

His voice heavy with emotion, Riewoldt paid tribute to his sister’s tenacity at fighting aplastic anaemia, which causes the body’s bone marrow to make too few new blood cells. [Herald Sun]

Carbone is a Type 1 diabetes patient who also has hypoglycemia unawareness. [NBC Chicago]

Vepoloxamer is being tested in a pivotal Phase 3 study called EPIC for the treatment of vaso-occlusive crisis in patients with sickle cell disease and in a Phase 2 study to evaluate whether vepoloxamer improves the effectiveness of recombinant tissue plasminogen activator therapy in patients with acute limb ischemia. [CNN Money]

It is probable that statins decrease the degree of ischaemia that occurs before a heart attack, leading to a decrease in the number of people with other ischaemic events and reducing the chronic impact on the heart. [The Scotsman]

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