Hemochromatosis is a hereditary condition in which too much iron builds up in your body from the food you consume.

Although hereditary hemochromatosis is present at birth, there are other forms that can develop for different reasons and sometimes later in life, these include [1]:

  • Neonatal hemochromatosis
  • Secondary hemochromatosis

See also: What is Hemochromatosis? Symptoms and Causes

Can you suddenly develop hemochromatosis?

While hereditary hemochromatosis is passed on from parents to their children, it is possible to also develop the condition - and not as a result of a genetic mutation.

See also: Iron Deficiency Anemia: Symptoms and Causes

Neonatal hemochromatosis

During neonatal hemochromatosis, iron builds up in the liver of the fetus. Although the exact cause is unknown, according to National Institutes of Health, it may be a result of the woman’s immune system recognizing the baby’s liver as foreign [2].

Secondary hemochromatosis

This form of hemochromatosis is sometimes referred to as iron overload. It can occur when there is excessive iron in someone's diet or they have had multiple blood transfusions.

One of the most reliable ways to know more about your iron levels is through regular testing. This can be done by taking a visit to your doctor or from the comfort of your own home with an at-home lab test.

LetsGetChecked’s at-home Iron Test can identify iron deficiencies in your body with online results available within 5 days. Our dedicated medical team will be available 24/7 to answer any questions you may have.

See also: How do you Check Iron Levels From Home?


  1. Mayo Clinic. Hemochromatosis. Online: Mayoclinic,org, 2020
  2. National Institutes of Health. Neonatal Hemochromatosis. Online: Rarediseases.info.nih.gov, 2020