What is Beta Thalassemia?

What is Beta Thalassemia?

Beta thalassemia is a blood disorder that reduces the production of hemoglobin . Hemoglobin is the iron-containing protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to cells throughout the body. In people with beta thalassemia, low levels of hemoglobin lead to a lack of oxygen in many parts of the body.

What is beta thalassemia caused by?

Beta thalassemia is caused by mutations in the hemoglobin beta (HBB) gene. Individuals with beta thalassemia minor have a mutation in one HBB gene, while individuals with the intermediate and major forms have mutations in both HBB genes.

What are the symptoms of beta thalassemia?

What Are the Signs & Symptoms of Beta Thalassemia Intermedia or Major?
  • extreme tiredness.
  • pale skin.
  • shortness of breath.
  • a fast heartbeat.
  • moodiness or irritability.
  • slow growth.
  • change in the shape of bones in the face and head.

Is beta thalassemia serious?

Beta thalassemia major causes major problems and can result in early death. Complications may include delayed growth, bone problems causing facial changes, liver and gall bladder problems, enlarged spleen, enlarged kidneys, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and heart problems.

How is beta thalassemia treated?

Treatment for beta thalassemia may include: Regular blood transfusions. Medications (to decrease amount of iron in the body, called chelation therapy) Surgical removal of the spleen (if necessary)

Is thalassemia a serious disease?

This is a condition called anemia. People with thalassemia may have mild or severe anemia. Severe anemia can damage organs and lead to death.

How long do thalassemia patients live?

Most thalassaemia patients would live up to the age of 25 to 30 years. Improved facilities will help them live up to the age of 60, said Dr Mamata Manglani, head of pediatrics, Sion hospital.

What are the 4 types of thalassemia?

Alpha thalassemia occurs when some or all of the 4 genes that make hemoglobin (the alpha-globin genes) are missing or damaged.

There are 4 types of alpha thalassemia:
  • Alpha thalassemia silent carrier. …
  • Alpha thalassemia carrier. …
  • Hemoglobin H disease. …
  • Alpha thalassemia major.

At what age is thalassemia detected?

Diagnosis. Most children with moderate to severe thalassemia receive a diagnosis by the time they are 2 years old. People with no symptoms may not realize they are carriers until they have a child with thalassemia.

What blood type is thalassemia?

Thalassemia is the name of a group of inherited blood disorders. There are two main types of thalassemia: alpha and beta, in reference to the alpha and beta proteins that form hemoglobin in the blood.

Is beta thalassemia a disability?

Only those with fairly low income and assets are eligible for SSI, even if they meet the medical eligibility criteria. With regard to medical eligibility, the SSA considers beta thalassemia an inherently disabling disease.

How common is beta thalassemia major?

Beta thalassemia is a fairly common blood disorder worldwide. Thousands of infants with beta thalassemia are born each year. Beta thalassemia occurs most frequently in people from Mediterranean countries, North Africa, the Middle East, India, Central Asia, and Southeast Asia.

What part of the body does thalassemia affect?

Thalassemia is often accompanied by the destruction of a large number of red blood cells. This causes your spleen to enlarge and work harder than normal. An enlarged spleen can make anemia worse, and it can reduce the life of transfused red blood cells.

What foods are good for beta thalassemia?

Nutritional deficiencies are common in thalassemia. It is recommended that patients going through blood transfusion should opt for a low iron diet. Avoiding iron-fortified foods like cereal, red meat, green leafy vegetables & Vitamin C-rich foods is the best option for thalassemic patients.

What vitamins should people with beta thalassemia take?

Many times people with thalassemia are prescribed a supplemental B vitamin, known as folic acid, to help treat anemia. Folic acid can help red blood cells develop. Treatment with folic acid is usually done in addition to other therapies.

How do you test for beta thalassemia?

Doctors diagnose thalassemias using blood tests, including a complete blood count (CBC) and special hemoglobin tests.
  1. A CBC measures the amount of hemoglobin and the different kinds of blood cells, such as red blood cells, in a sample of blood. …
  2. Hemoglobin tests measure the types of hemoglobin in a blood sample.

Can thalassemia patients marry?

Aim: With good care, patients with transfusion-dependent thalassemia major (TDTM) can reach older ages, marry and reproduce.

Can two thalassemia minor get married?

If one is a Thalassaemia Minor one must get the spouse/future spouse also tested. If both partners in a marriage are Thalassaemia Minor, there is a 25% chance in every pregnancy that their child will be a Thalassaemia Major.

Does thalassemia minor affect periods?

Puberty may be delayed or progress abnormally in teenagers with thalassemia, due to iron build up impairing the function of the pituitary gland. This may lead to complications such as: Absence of menstruation, known as amenorrhea.

What is the life expectancy of someone with beta thalassemia?

Persons with the thalassemia trait have a normal life expectancy. Persons with beta thalassemia major often die from cardiac complications of iron overload by 30 years of age.

What famous person has thalassemia?

Former professional tennis player Pete Sampras is known to be a Thalassemia minor patient. Former professional football (soccer) player Zinedine Zidane is known to be a Thalassemia minor patient.

Which actor has a thalassemia?

As the world celebrates World Thalassemia Day, Jackie Shroff shares how he intends to spread awareness around the genetic blood disorder. The actor, who has films like Saaho and RAW in his kitty, became the brand ambassador of Thalassemia in India recently.

What is worst form of thalassemia?

Thalassemia major is the most severe form of beta thalassemia. It develops when beta globin genes are missing. The symptoms of thalassemia major generally appear before a child’s second birthday. The severe anemia related to this condition can be life-threatening.

Can I donate blood if I have thalassemia?

You must not donate blood if you have had babesiosis. You will be permanently deferred. If you have G6PD (Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase Deficiency) or Thalassemia (minor), you can donate blood if you meet the haemoglobin requirement.

Where did beta thalassemia originate?

Alpha thalassemias occur most often in people from Southeast Asia, the Middle East, China, and in those of African descent. Beta thalassemias occur most often in people of Mediterranean origin. To a lesser extent, Chinese, other Asians, and African Americans can be affected. There are many forms of thalassemia.

Can thalassemia cause leukemia?

The coexistence of thalassemia with cancers such as Hodgkin disease, lymphoma, seminoma, and leukemia has been reported [3,4,5,6,7]. This coexistence could be explained by either genetic or environmental interactions, or it might be thought of as just a coincidence.

How do I know if I am a thalassemia carrier?

You can find out if you’re a carrier of thalassaemia by having a simple blood test. The NHS Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia Screening Programme also has detailed leaflets about being a beta thalassaemia carrier or a delta beta thalassaemia carrier.

Is coffee good for thalassemia?

Some foods, such as orange juice, can enhance iron absorption, while others, like tea, dairy and coffee, can decrease absorption. If you are using Desferal, however, it is recommended that you take 250 mg or less of vitamin C after beginning infusion to help increase output of iron.

Is beta thalassemia an autoimmune disease?

It was generally assumed that the ?-thalassemia heterozygotes do not bear significant medical risks except a mild microcytic anemia. Nonetheless, increasing number of reports associate ?-thalassemia trait with autoimmune conditions, nephritis, diabetes, arthritis, fibromyalgia and asthma.

Is thalassemia more common in males or females?

Conclusions: This study demonstrates a gender difference not only in the prevalence of osteoporosis/osteopenia in patients with TM, but also in the severity of the disorder, as males are more frequently and severely affected than females.

What if both parents have thalassemia?

If both parents have the beta thalassaemia trait, there’s a: 1 in 4 chance each child they have will not inherit any faulty genes and will not have thalassaemia or be able to pass it on. 1 in 2 chance each child they have will just inherit a copy of the faulty gene from 1 parent and be a carrier.

Is banana good for thalassemia?

Banana are a good source of folic acid. They will help build RBC.

How can I overcome thalassemia?

For moderate to severe thalassemia, treatments might include:
  1. Frequent blood transfusions. More severe forms of thalassemia often require frequent blood transfusions, possibly every few weeks. …
  2. Chelation therapy. This is treatment to remove excess iron from your blood. …
  3. Stem cell transplant.

How do I raise my hemoglobin?

How to increase hemoglobin
  1. meat and fish.
  2. soy products, including tofu and edamame.
  3. eggs.
  4. dried fruits, such as dates and figs.
  5. broccoli.
  6. green leafy vegetables, such as kale and spinach.
  7. green beans.
  8. nuts and seeds.

Can thalassemia cause heavy periods?

As people with a chronic disease, thalassemia patients go through some painful periods in life, in addition to the regular troubles of everyday living.

Is milk good for thalassemia?

Calcium. Many factors in thalassaemia promote calcium depletion. A diet containing adequate calcium (e.g. milk, cheese, dairy products and kale) is always recommended.

How do I get more energy with thalassemia?

Exercise. Exercise is part of an overall healthy lifestyle and helps lead to better health outcomes. Although some people with thalassemia may have trouble participating in vigorous forms of exercise, many people with thalassemia can participate in moderate physical activities including biking, running, and walking.

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