What is Thalassaemia
Thalassaemia is a genetic blood disorder whereby the red cells are unable to carry a sufficient supply of oxygen for the body. Some of this common traits of thalassaemia patients are:
• Bone marrow cannot produce normal red blood cells
• Heart & other organs fail due to lack of oxygen
• Patients look pale and feel tired all the time
• If NOT treated, they usually die between 1 to 8 years old
In Asia more than 150 million people have the thalassaemia trait.
These people aret halassaemia carriers. Many of them do not realize this as it does not cause them illness. It can only be discovered through specific blood test done by a doctor.
2 Form of Thalassaemia
• Thalassaemia Minor (Trait)
• They are healthy
• They are carriers
• Hey may pass down the gene to next generation
• 3 – 5% of Malaysians are carriers Thalassaemia Major
• Serious blood disorder
• Need monthly blood transfusion
• Need medical treatment
As the general public is still largely ignorant of the Thalassaemia, it is one of our objectives to spread information of this potentially fatal blood disorder.
If a person has the thalassaemia trait, many of his or her relatives may also have it. If you know someone has the trait, kindly advise their family members to go for blood test as well.