When a person has a low hemoglobin count, it means that the pigment in their blood that carries oxygen to their cells is at abnormally low levels. This mean it is less than 12 grams of hemoglobin or Hgb per deciliter of blood for a woman and less than 13.4 grams per deciliter for a man. Low hemoglobin count in children depends on the child’s age and sex. A low hemoglobin test usually indicates that the person has anemia, which means they don’t have enough iron or oxygen in their blood. People most at risk for this are women of childbearing age; elderly people who may have diets that are either low in iron or whose bodies don’t absorb iron the way they used to; people who are on anticoagulants and people who are on dialysis.
Information. Hemoglobin is a pigment that gives blood its red color, but it is also a type of protein. It is made up of four sections that holds a chemical called heme. Heme in turn holds iron, which carries oxygen. The cells of the body require oxygen to stay healthy. The shape of normal hemoglobin also gives red blood cells their donut-like shape.