Severe cases of this disease that causes intense fatigue need extensive treatment, right from birth.
What’s the hassle with thalassaemia?
If you can get those words to roll off your tongue, you have speaking skills and a flexible mouth. You may not have ever heard of the condition your pronouncing though, something that could leave you wondering what you’re talking about.
So, what is thalassaemia? It’s an inherited blood disorder. The disease causes the bodies of those who have it to produce an abnormal or inadequate amount of hemoglobin.
Patients bodies then destroy a large number of red blood cells in response to this, resulting in them being anemic.
This means the person with thalassaemia doesn’t have enough healthy cells to carry oxygen throughout their body, which leaves them feeling tired, repressed and weak.
Is it deadly? Thalassaemia, in its severe form, can cause extreme anemia which can lead to organ damage, causing death. So, yes. But most people don’t have it that badly.
Those with a mild form of thalassaemia may not need treatment. Strong forms of the impairment will require blood transfusions, and possible treatment for iron overload.
It is possible to suffer from a mild form of the disorder, and so not everyone who has it need worry.
Thalassaemia is usually detected at or near birth, and offers those who have it some added protection against malaria.
Surprisingly, more than 1 in 10 people living in Cyprus are carriers of the disease.