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Semantic US-centrism issue[edit]

Little trivial but near the start we get "Thalassemias are particularly associated with Arab-Americans, people of Mediterranean origin, and Asians." I assume that should just read Arabs unless it is particularly an issue with the Arab diaspora in the US as opposed to Arabs elsewhere. (talk) 08:53, 15 December 2007 (UTC)


What are the food the you can suggest for those person carrying thalassemia. THANK YOU!!!Tanmichelle (talk) 01:40, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

Iran has the best screening and counseling program![edit]

"Countries such as India, Pakistan and Iran are seeing a large increase of thalassemia patients due to lack of genetic counseling and screening."

see next refs:
- Haddow JE (2005) Couple screening to avoid thalassemia: successful in Iran and instructive for us all. J Med Screen. 2005;12(2):55-6 ([[1]])
- Samavat A, Modell B. Iranian national thalassemia screening programme. BMJ 2004;329:1134–7 ([[2]]) —Preceding unsigned comment added by P.solaimani (talkcontribs) 00:47, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

older entries[edit]

Thalassa is classical Greek for sea. Where does the name of this condition come from? --FOo 15:00, 31 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Is it???

The condition was first recognized in people living around the Mediterranean Sea, notably Italy, Greece and Syria. The term thalassemia was first mentioned (according to Oxford Dictionary) in an article by Whipple & Bradford in the American Journal of Disease in Children in 1932. The sentence "For this reason, the term thalassemia may have an appeal" suggests that it may have been used before this article. It's common in countries which have or have had experience with malaria and can be found in people living in central Africa, India and Southeast Asia. It has been recognized more often in USA after the influx of more than one million of Southeast Asian refugees since 1970's. Some people believe that thalassemia spread to Asia through Great Alexander's soldiers intermarriages as he moved East.

Interesting news

Other thalassemia[edit]

I have Delta Thalassemia and came to this page to find out more about it. What makes it different from Alpha or Beta?

Well, it's much rarer. The non-A/B thalassaemias have essentially the same problem as the others (anemia and iron overload) but it depends on the type and on whether someone only has the trait or is actually homozygote. Please carry on looking and bring useful information back to this page. Wikipedia can learn from your experiences. JFW | T@lk 00:32, 13 November 2005 (UTC)

--Marientina 07:08, 10 January 2006 (UTC)The best reference I foundo so far although still a little incomplete is in a pediatrics article in e-medicine

Delta Thalassemia is extremely rare, because while someone is still a fetus they have an alpha and delta chain, inseatd of an alpha and beta chain. When someone is born the delta chain is replaced by the beta chain and to still have the delta chain is extremely rare and when someone does have it, it is almost 100% likely that they will have thalassemia.

--Jbrintrup. In the phrase above there is a confusion between delta and gamma. Gamma globin forms fetal hemoglobin (HbF: two alpha subunits, two gamma subunits). HbF is present in healthy adults in minor quantities (less than 1% of total hemoglobin). Higher concentrations of HbF are present in some patients with beta thalassemia and/or beta hemoglobin variants (for example HbS: sickle cell hemoglobin) due to a compensation mechanism, and also in people with Hereditary Persistance of Fetal Hemoglobin (HPFH), which is actually a benign condition. Regarding delta-thalassemia: delta globin chains are found in form oh hemoglobin A2 (HbA2: two alpha chains, two delta chains). The total amount of HbA2 in adults is about 3% of total hemoglobin, and this is why even individuals homozygous for a delta thalassemic mutations are healthy. Delta thalassemia is also a benign condition, it is even possible that delta thalassemia might not be so rare: it is just not easy to detect, since people is healty. Delta thalassemia should not be confused with delta/beta thalassemias where both genes are affected. Such patients do have significant symptoms similar to beta thalassemia. Delta/beta thalassemias are caused in most cases by big deletions (many kilobases long) affecting both HBD (delta globin gene) and HBB (Beta globin gene).--Jbrintrup (talk) 12:30, 9 April 2010 (UTC)

Survey on Genetic Testing, Policy, and Treatment of Thalassemia[edit]

Our research group at the University of British Columbia has developed a survey on issues and policies surrounding genetic testing and treatment, based on the case of Beta-Thalassemia in Cyprus.

You are invited to take our survey at: (The number at the end of the url marks it as coming from this site; use this plain one if your prefer:

We would also like advice on whether it is appropriate to add a link to this survey to the main article. Pdanielson 17:28, 30 November 2005 (UTC)


I have beta thalassaemia minor, I can say with reasonable doubt that it has been asymptomatic and the only reason I was tested and diagnosed with thalassaemia was because my mother has it. Now I can’t remember off hand (I was child/teenager at the time) what testing the doctors did to identify it but I do remember them saying that my blood test showed I was “anemic” (as in generally) and had “low iron levels” I notice these noted here on wiki as symptoms of alpha thalassaemia not beta, wonder if that should be correct as general systems of thalassaemia or not? --BerserkerBen 19:10, 30 November 2005 (UTC)

Mild anemia is actually listed as a symptom of beta thalassemia minor already. --WS 19:42, 30 November 2005 (UTC)
yes but what about low iron? --BerserkerBen 22:22, 30 November 2005 (UTC)
Iron levels are usually normal. Low iron levels can suggest another cause such as iron deficiency or anemia resulting from chronic disorders. --WS 23:36, 30 November 2005 (UTC)
Some carriers are asymptomatic and some are symptomatic. There so many variants of the mutation as many as people and it usually becomes notices in combination with other disorders. It can co-exist with iron deficiency, B12 deficiency etc...It isn't specifically an iron deficiency disorder on its own but in combination with that you have more symptoms. --Marientina 07:17, 1 December 2005 (UTC)

--Jbrintrup. 9 april 2010.

Diagnosis of beta thalassaemia minor: in most cases mycrocitic, hypochromic anemia (MCV and MCH are lower than normal: in plain english, red blood cells are smaller and have less hemoglobin than they should.). Patients older than 6 months: HbA2 3,5-7,5% (normal value ~3%). HbF is not necessarily increased. Iron level is not critical for the disgnosis of beta thalassemia minor. This are the most common findings. There are MANY exceptions (and variations of such exceptions...). Final diagnosis of beta thalasemia: sequencing of HBB (Beta globin gene), then search for deletions in Human_β-globin_locus --Jbrintrup (talk) 13:03, 9 April 2010 (UTC)


Hi wonder if you could help me. My husband has the thalassemia trait, a year and a half ago he was diagnosed with B12 deficiency, is this because of him being a carrier? I know the B12 deficiency has effected his nerve system, could this effect his libido? Regards —Preceding unsigned comment added by Northern Cyprus (talkcontribs) 19:40, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Under treatment, the text mentions thalassemia minor, but no where in the text is there an explanation of what the difference between minor and major is. Could someone please explain the terms or remove them from the text.

I'm doing a report on thalassemia. A concern I have about this site is: What exactly does thalassemia do to you? I understand that it makes red blood cells vunerable to damage, decreases their weight and volume, but what does this hemoglobin disorder actually do to a patient's life? Oh, and my assignment is due Dec. 20th. but do try to answer anyways. Thanks. -UnregisteredUser787281013

Thalassaemia leads to chronic anemia, which impairs growth and predisposes for other diseases. In addition, both the disease and its treatment (blood transfusion) cause accumulation of iron in the body. This causes liver damage, hormone problems and osteoporosis.
The ideal treatment for severe cases is transplanting bone marrow that produces normal red blood cells. As this carries many risks, the risk has to be outweighed by the benefits for a peripheral blood stem cell transplant (PBSCT) to be worthwhile. Additional treatments include regular blood transfusions and iron chelation (i.e. accellerating the elimination of the excess iron in the body).
Thalassaemia was recently reviewed in the New England Journal of Medicine[3], but that is rather technical. Drop a line on my talkpage if you need to have more information. JFW | T@lk 21:07, 11 December 2005 (UTC)


Both my parents have Thalassaemia Minor hence I was born with Thalassaemia Major, I take weekly blood transfusions and also use Desferal/Kelfer for Iron Chelation. I have a personal website with all articles related to this genetic disorder and also have a fourms for discussion. Visit to read my personal story Trials & Tribulations of a Thalassaemic Major

Regards Ashish Vazirani

Hey Ashish, that will be very useful for UnregisteredUser787281013 rather than dry science articles. JFW | T@lk 23:59, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for the information, Jdfwolff. I'll check Ashish's site soon. And I really am unregistered; I have a phobia of privacy intrusions. -UnregisteredUser787281013


i recently went to a doctor for a physical and he mentioned that my red blood cell count was low and suggested that because i consumed a lot or iron rich foods, that it may be Thalassaemia, which people usually mistake with low irons. He mentioned that the red blood cells with certain types of Thalassaemia is actually slightly smaller than a normal persons red blood cell because that blood cell is missing one or two protiens as mentioned in the article; and thus resulting in a smaller blood count. (anon 12/26/05)

I have 2 daughter's ages 6 and 1. Is it ok if i bring them to the doctors to do some test for thelassemia? Thank you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Tanmichelle (talkcontribs) 01:47, 28 February 2008 (UTC)


poop oesn't mention Thalassemia Minima.[4]

  • How about redirects for the short forms, i.e., "alpha thal" and "beta thal"?

-- Robocoder (talk | contribs) 15:39, 4 September 2006 (UTC)


I've been looking everywhere I can think of, including medical books and libraries and, like I said, everywhere, but nowhere does it say how long a person with Thalassemia lives. Could someone point me in the right direction? Thanks! Katami 01:48, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

It depends; people with Thalassemia minor usually can live normal lives, which I assume means "as long as anyone else". Apparently the life insurance industry thinks so too, because I have it (and disclosed it when I was doing the paperwork), and I'm considered better than a non-smoker in their eyes. Anyway, I've read that people with Thalassemia major, who need frequent blood transfusions, don't live as long (maybe into their 30s if they're lucky) because of complications with the blood transfusions, iron overload, etc. 22:35, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

All right, thanks! - Katami 00:07, 4 November 2006 (UTC)

Thalassemias are not automatically hemoglobinopathies[edit]

Some have perfectly normal hemoglobins. By strict definition, hemoglobinopathy requires an abnormal hemoglobin, not abnormal amounts of a normal hemoglobin. [5] SBHarris 21:35, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

This is an old confusion. Some people associate "hemoglobinopathies" with "hemoglobin variants". Others use "hemoglobinopathy" as a common definition for all genetic diseases affecting hemoglobin, including thalassemias AND hemoglobin variants, which in my humble opinion is correct. (Greek pathos, -pathy "disease": Hemoglobinopathy Hemoglobin`s disease).
Also note that HbVar (A Database of Human Hemoglobin Variants and Thalassemias) do not use the term "hemoglobinopathy" at all. I think the curators in their wisdom foresaw the catastrophic consecuences of such missunderstanding.[6][7]
--Jbrintrup (talk) 13:59, 9 April 2010 (UTC)

Question: is Autosomal Recessive illustration correct?[edit]

Forgive my ignorance, but is the genetic illustration correct? It seems to give the impression that autosomal recessivity is sex-linked. The illustration for Sickle-cell would seem to be more appropriate: However, if I have completely misunderstood this, perhaps someone can clarify. (talk) 10:29, 13 January 2008 (UTC)Martin Turner (talk) 10:31, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Yes, both the .jpg and .svg versions are correct. They display male and female children merely for illustrative purposes, but the inheritance pattern is displayed correctly. I actually don't like using the .svg version, though, because the colors in it may look differently when a color-blind person sees the image. --Rcej (talk) 07:54, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

Question: I have Thalassemia minor and also my son. My blood count ia 10; however, my son is 8. A doctor has suggested a blood transfusion for him; however, I have heard that Erythropoetin would be better. Help —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:56, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

A doctor?? Get a second opinion. If they disagree, go to a local university center and get a third and forth. Medical opinions are relatively cheap compared with most medical tests. For the cost of one blood transfusion you can get two opinions by experts. SBHarris 03:20, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

Article of Low importance?[edit]

I think its strange for a disease that is the most common inherited disease in humans to be rated low importance. Anyone agree? (talk) 10:57, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

I totally agree with you, this article is an important subject for any encyclopedia, but in some parts of the world this disease is not that common so people there might think this is not important...Glasszone33 (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 14:44, 28 February 2009 (UTC).

Does Homeopathy works in Thalassemia[edit]

Hi..My son is 1yr old and he is dignosed with Thalassemia major. I got to know of homeopathy treatment for the same works good if there had been no blood transfussion yet.Anyone has any experience on this one.His Hb count is 7.4 right now when would there be a requirement of blood transfussion? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:34, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

Homeopathy treatment fro Thalassemia[edit]

A group of doctors in India claim to have treatment of Thalassemia by use of their continued homeopathy treatment. They also claim that if the blood transfussion in the patient has not been done yet the medicine can maintain the Hb count to a level that there would no requirement of blood transfussion and a person can live a normal life. There had been symptoms of jaundice, spleen enlargement in the patient so far and the test reported him to be a thalassemia major patient. We have started the treatment with Homeopathy and are waiting for the results if there is a stagnancy or improvement in the Hb count. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:40, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

gene ??[edit]

β globin chains are encoded by a single gene on chromosome 11; α globin chains are encoded by two closely linked genes on chromosome 16. Thus in a normal person with two copies of each chromosome, there are four loci encoding the β chain, and two loci encoding the α chain. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:23, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

From thalassemia minor to major[edit]

is there any chances or possibilities that the minor thalassemia is going to evolve to major one?

for example, if the minor thalassemia is not treated in earlier time, is it going to up in the different level of thalassemia?

I hope someone answer my concern.. thanks!

No it is not possible ...if parents are of minor thalessimia then they can produce a major once....if parents hv 4 children then 1 will be of major thalessimia —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:54, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

Major definition error[edit]

I think it should be discussed here first before making any change in the main article. There are big errors in the definition of the disease. While talassemia is in most cases an "inherited autosomal recessive blood disease" this statement is not true in all cases. There are rare cases of acquired thalassemia. Some mutations in the beta globin gene (most of them in exon 3) show an autosomal dominant inheritance pattern. Other major error is to state that "the genetic defect results in reduced rate of synthesis of one of the globin chains that make up hemoglobin." Again, while this is true in most cases, there are also a considerable amount of thalassemias where the "synthesis" is not altered, or it is even increased, but due to hemolysis (destruction of hemoglobin and/or red blood cells) the final amount of hemoglobin in blood is reduced. I propose a more general definition that is valid for all cases of thalassemia, something like this: Thalassemias are a group of diseases (there are many types: alpha thalassemia, beta thalassemia, etc.) of the red blood cells caused by mutations (inherited or not) resulting in a decreased concentration of hemoglobin in blood (either by decreased production or hemolysis (hemoglobin "destruction"))--Jbrintrup (talk) 11:30, 9 April 2010 (UTC)

19:50, 20 August 2011 (UTC)ProfMad19:50, 20 August 2011 (UTC)

Thalassaemia (trait) minor, is poorly understood in the UK

I was diagnosed in 1975 (aged 16) with Thalassaeamia minor. inherited from my father, a Cypriot. It was picked up on a blood test for thyrotoxicosis (-ve).I was given folic acid. It then was never mentioned again, until I developed diabetes, nearly 30 years later. Over the past 8 years, GP's all seem/look confused, as I explain the do's & the dont's. My father lived till he was 94 & an extreme athlete. I have always treated my anaemia. British GP's seem ignorant to this genetic trait, and it's manifestations. 19:50, 20 August 2011 (UTC)ProfMad19:50, 20 August 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Profmad (talkcontribs)

In one week...[edit]

Might be useful. JFW | T@lk 23:20, 28 January 2012 (UTC)

Yes indeed, I'll read them. Thanks, Graham. Graham Colm (talk) 23:30, 28 January 2012 (UTC)


The symptoms are missing in the article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:0:53AA:64C:14F1:35D4:A12A:938C (talk) 15:53, 15 June 2012 (UTC)

my daughter has apha thalassemia[edit]

my daughter has alpha thalassemia and I'm trying to get a better understanding of this. The doctor have advise that she cannot marrie anyone who has the same trait. what will effect will it cause when thry have a child together?

[Author unknown] (talk) 11:36, 27 July 2012 (UTC)

please go to Red.svg{{{2}}} arrow Wikipedia:Reference desk/Science#my daughter has apha thalassemia Penyulap 12:31, 29 Jul 2012 (UTC)

Epidemiology section appears to have been written twice[edit]

There are two paragraphs under the Epidemiology heading. They have about 60% overlap, but two different values for the prevalence of thalassaemia in the Maldives (16% and 18%) though neither is referenced. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:07, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

Mediterranean link to etymology?[edit]

An editor made an uncited claim that the reason for the Greek etymology of the condition name is the prevalence of the condition among people of Mediterranean descent. How can this be true when there are so many other conditions with names stemming from Greek or Latin language (e.g. anaemia?) which are not associated with the Mediterranean area? ```` — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:21, 26 March 2013 (UTC)

WP:Engvar in title[edit]

I think this is consistent with how this is handled generally: color, behavior, hematology, etc. Yes, I know about WP:Other stuff exists, but this does seem to be the norm. -- Scray (talk) 04:35, 21 July 2013 (UTC)

Yes no strong thoughs either way. Happy to leave it in if that is the norm. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 04:37, 21 July 2013 (UTC)
Now I see that it's covered in MOS:LEADALT - so it's policy to include alternate spellings. I learned something new. -- Scray (talk) 04:38, 21 July 2013 (UTC)
And so do I, thanks. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 04:46, 21 July 2013 (UTC)

Pulmonary hypertension[edit]

... more common in thal intermedia than thal major. doi:10.1161/​CIRCULATIONAHA.113.002124 JFW | T@lk 17:00, 21 January 2014 (UTC)