What is EPO?
Erythropoietin is a hormone produced by the kidneys. The hormone plays an important role in the production of RBCs by bone marrow. The disturbed level of erythropoietin serves as an indication of anemia, kidney and bone marrow related disorders. Low levels of erythropoietin in anemic patients reflects malfunctioning of kidneys, while high levels indicate iron or vitamin deficiency, or a bone marrow disorder. High number of red blood cells (RBCs) with increased erythropoietin levels is a sign of secondary polycythemia.