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a heterogeneous group of hereditary hemolytic anemias marked by a decreased rate of synthesis of one or more hemoglobin polypeptide chains, classified according to the chain involved (α, β, δ); the two major categories are α- and β-thalassemia.
α-thalassemia (alpha-thalassemia) that caused by diminished synthesis of alpha chains of hemoglobin. The homozygous form is incompatible with life, the stillborn infant displaying severe hydrops fetalis. The heterozygous form may be asymptomatic or marked by mild anemia.
β-thalassemia (beta-thalassemia) that caused by diminished synthesis of beta chains of hemoglobin. The homozygous form is called t. major and the heterozygous form is called t. minor.
thalassemia ma´jor the homozygous form of β-thalassemia, in which hemoglobin A is completely absent; it appears in the newborn period and is marked by hemolytic, hypochromic, microcytic anemia; hepatosplenomegaly; skeletal deformation; mongoloid facies; and cardiac enlargement.
thalassemia mi´nor the heterozygous form of β-thalassemia; it is usually asymptomatic, but there may be mild anemia.
sickle cell–thalassemia a hereditary anemia involving simultaneous heterozygosity for hemoglobin S and thalassemia.
β-thalassemiaThalassemia major Hematology A hemoglobinopathy caused by a defect in the synthesis of Hb β chain Clinical Pallor, fatigability, FTT, fever due to infections, diarrhea, bone deformities, hepatosplenomegaly Management Transfusions, but iron overload can damage the heart, liver, and endocrine systems, ergo iron chelation–early use of deferiprone, deferoxamine ↓ transfusion-related iron overload and may protect against DM, cardiac disease, early death
Thalassemia due to one of two or more genes that depress (partially or completely) synthesis of beta-globin chains by the chromosome bearing the abnormal gene.