Thalassemia is a genetically inherited blood disorder in which the body starts producing an abnormal form of hemoglobin. This hemoglobin gets destroyed by natural immunity, and ultimately leads to anemia.
What is the prevalence of Thalassemia?
Beta thalassemia is particularly prevalent among Mediterranean peoples, and due to this geographical association, it is also known as Mediterranean anemia. It is also commonly seen in Greece, Turkey, and Italy. In India, it is more commonly seen in Jain and Gujarati community.
Why does it occur?
Genetic mutation of the gene which is concerned with hemoglobin production is the major cause of it. This mutant gene is generally inherited from the parents. If both the parents transmit mutated gene to the offspring, then the offering will surely develop thalassemia, and if only one parent transmits mutant gene, then the offspring will become only carrier of the disease. He/she will not get the symptoms of the disease or very rarely he may get symptoms but in minor form.
Types of Thalassemia-
The globin part of hemoglobin includes alpha and beta globin. There are two main types of thalassemia, and they are as follows:
Symptoms of Thalassemia-
How to diagnose it?
Diagnosis can be made by following test:
What is the treatment available for it?
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