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Short stature in beta-thalassemia minor subjects

Mehran Karimi, Hamd-Allah Karamifar

Med Sci Monit 2004; 10(11): CR603-605

ID: 11809

Background:Numerous disturbances in growth and development have been observed and demonstrated in homozygote β-thalassemia patients. However, short stature in thalassemia minor subjects, who have a minor defect in hemoglobin chain synthesis, has not yet been studied.Material/Methods: In this cross-sectional study, the heights of 100 thalassemia minor subjects in the age group of 2–18 years and their parents were measured and analyzed. If the subject were in the 3–10 percentile range of height based on standardized sex and age curves, several follow-ups with complete history and physical examinations for a period of one year were preformed. If the healthy carrier’s height was below the 3rd percentile, history, physical examination, and paraclinical examinations, including BUN, creatinine, electrolytes, serum alkaline phosphatase, thyroid function tests, growth hormone and cortisol levels, arterial blood gas, radiography of the left hand and wrist, etc, were also checked. One hundred healthy children were randomly chosen as a control group and matched for demographic characteristics with our healthy carrier subjects.Results: Mean ± standard deviation for the age of our subjects was 6.62±3.63 years old. Twenty-seven (27%) of the patients had short stature. Except for hemoglobin (with a mean of 11.5 g/l), all other paraclinical data were normal.Conclusions: We concluded that short stature was significantly more prevalent in the healthy beta thalassemia minor subjects than in the control group (p

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