11 doctors weighed in:

What is thalassemia?

11 doctors weighed in
Dr. Michael Engel
Pediatrics - Hematology & Oncology
3 doctors agree

In brief: Thalassemia

Thalassemia is a deficiency in the production of one of the globin chains (alpha or beta) that make up hemoglobin.
Normally synthesis of these is balanced. When imbalanced, one globin accumulates relative to the other forming inclusions that are damaging to the red cells that contain them. There are many thal variants that manifest a wide severity of symptoms from none to transfusion dependence.

In brief: Thalassemia

Thalassemia is a deficiency in the production of one of the globin chains (alpha or beta) that make up hemoglobin.
Normally synthesis of these is balanced. When imbalanced, one globin accumulates relative to the other forming inclusions that are damaging to the red cells that contain them. There are many thal variants that manifest a wide severity of symptoms from none to transfusion dependence.
Dr. Michael Engel
Dr. Michael Engel
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Dr. Robert Kwok
Pediatrics
2 doctors agree

In brief: Familial blood trait

Thalassemia runs in families.
It is caused by variations (mutations) in dna, which is then passed on to future generations. There are many variations in the dna (genes) that code for hemoglobin molecules inside red blood cells. Some of these variations cause the hemoglobin production to be very slow, so blood cells stay too small because they can't get enough hemoglobin to grow to normal size.

In brief: Familial blood trait

Thalassemia runs in families.
It is caused by variations (mutations) in dna, which is then passed on to future generations. There are many variations in the dna (genes) that code for hemoglobin molecules inside red blood cells. Some of these variations cause the hemoglobin production to be very slow, so blood cells stay too small because they can't get enough hemoglobin to grow to normal size.
Dr. Robert Kwok
Dr. Robert Kwok
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1 comment
Dr. Ira Katz
It is almost always not a condition that causes any health concerns, but you should tell any doctors doing blood tests because it can make them confusing and lead to more unhelpful testing!
Dr. Paul Trani
Pediatrics

In brief: Genetic anemia

Thalassemia is a genetically inherited deficiency in one of the types of proteins that make up hemoglobin, the substance that carries iron and binds to oxygen in the bloodstream. Deficiencies in these proteins - most commonly the Alpha or beta sub-types - results in less functional hemoglobin in the body, and less ability to carry oxygen in some cases.
Talk to your provider for more info.

In brief: Genetic anemia

Thalassemia is a genetically inherited deficiency in one of the types of proteins that make up hemoglobin, the substance that carries iron and binds to oxygen in the bloodstream. Deficiencies in these proteins - most commonly the Alpha or beta sub-types - results in less functional hemoglobin in the body, and less ability to carry oxygen in some cases.
Talk to your provider for more info.
Dr. Paul Trani
Dr. Paul Trani
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Dr. Kevin Windisch
Pediatrics

In brief: Cant make hemoglobin

Thalassemia is an inability to make one of the two chains that make up hemoglobin.
Hemoglobin is the major component of red blood cells and is the part of the clls responsible for carying oxygen throught the body.

In brief: Cant make hemoglobin

Thalassemia is an inability to make one of the two chains that make up hemoglobin.
Hemoglobin is the major component of red blood cells and is the part of the clls responsible for carying oxygen throught the body.
Dr. Kevin Windisch
Dr. Kevin Windisch
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Dr. Marcus Degraw
Pediatrics

In brief: A blood disorder

Thalassemia is a blood disorder passed down through families (inherited) in which the body makes an unusual type of hemoglobin, the part of red blood cells that carries oxygen.
The condition causes heavy destruction of red blood cells, which leads to anemia or a low blood count. There are twon main types based on which chain is affected - Alpha or beta.

In brief: A blood disorder

Thalassemia is a blood disorder passed down through families (inherited) in which the body makes an unusual type of hemoglobin, the part of red blood cells that carries oxygen.
The condition causes heavy destruction of red blood cells, which leads to anemia or a low blood count. There are twon main types based on which chain is affected - Alpha or beta.
Dr. Marcus Degraw
Dr. Marcus Degraw
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Lori Luchtman-jones
see this great website for more information: www.thalassemia.org
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