November 28, 2021

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Beta Thalassemia; Causes and Types (minor, major and intermedia).

3 min read

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Microcytic anemia includes iron deficiency anemia (less iron), anemia of chronic disease (iron available but inaccessible), sideroblastic anemia (defect in heme synthesis) and thalassemia (defect in Globin synthesis).

Thalassemia comes from the Greek word “Thalassa” which means: the sea.

Beta thalassemia is common in Italy and Greece.

Symptoms of anemia are fatigue, pallor, shortness of breath, headache, dizziness, exercise intolerance, murmur (flow murmur, not organic), ischemia (angina pectoris).

It is subdivided into beta thalassemia major, beta thalassemia minor, and beta thalassemia intermedia.

The anemia is usually microcytic hypochromic. (Mean corpuscular volume “MCV” is low)

Hemoglobin is made up of heme and globin…Heme is made of iron plus protoporphyrin.

Chromosome 11 is involved, a non-sense DNA mutation leads to a premature stop codon formation which will cause termination of protein synthesis.

A defect in Beta globin chains synthesis leads to beta thalassemia.
Beta thalassemia can be usually diagnosed using hemoglobin electrophoresis.

Hair-on-end appearance can appear on an x-ray of the skull. (Radiological finding)

Beta thalassemia major is also known as Cooley’s anemia.

Management of thalassemia is discussed in a different video. Check out my playlist titled “Hematology/ Oncology”…

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Watch my videos on
Alpha thalassemia
Lab results in thalassemia
Management of thalassemia

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In brief, beta thalassemia is a microcytic, hemolytic anemia that affects people living near the mediterranean sea. If you like my videos, please consider leaving a tip at
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34 thoughts on “Beta Thalassemia; Causes and Types (minor, major and intermedia).

  1. Hello Sir ,,
    My Name is Rasel
    I am 22 year old .
    Wet: 49 kg
    Bp : NormaL
    My Sym:
    yellow eyes
    yellow Urine
    Splenomegaly(enlarged 18 cm)
    Hemoglobin :8.0g/dl
    RBC: Anisopoikilocytosis with frequent target cell occasional tear drop cell and pencil cell.
    WBC : Mature with above count and distribution.
    Platelet: Normal.
    comments : Microcytic Hypochromic anaemia
    Iron : is very low
    ferritin: Normal
    TIBC: 472 (normal:200-400)
    Bilirubin : 6
    MY Hb Electrohporesis value are (Hb F -20.7), (Hb -70.3) (Hb A2 7.5)
    And My Father has (Hb -94.5) (Hb A2 5.5)
    My Mother Has (Hb A – 71.5) (Hb E-24 .7)(Hb -A2 3.8)
    Without blood transmition ,I feel better
    So , I have no need blood transmition.
    How can slove Upper Given Problem,
    Please Help me Sir,

  2. I was wondering are there cases where Beta Thalassemia minor can give a frontal bossing to a patient? Or it's only happening in major?

  3. Repeated blood transfusion will increase iron load & will lead to bronze diabetes & also will also affect hypothalamic- pituitary axis leading to stunted growth☺️

  4. Thank you for the video, I am 35 yr old and Beta-Thalessemia Minor. Since past 6-7 years i started to experience exercise induced intermittent claudication. This intermittent claudication won't let me to run more than 10 mins. Does anyone experience similar condition? Btw i never felt claudicaitons in my childhood, it develops later part of life

  5. "Go back to microbiology and repeat this subject.."… Ummm it's more molecular biology and fuck that, im studying for step 3 and forgot the thalassemias. But a great way to just get to the point. Perfect video

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