Ferritin Levels in Patients of Beta Thalassaemia Major

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Ferritin Levels in Patients of Beta Thalassaemia Major

Nadeem Ikram, Khalid Hassan, Muhammad Younas, Samina Amanat
 District Head Quarters Hospital, Rawalpindi
 Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences, Islamabad

In Beta Thalassaemia Major repeated blood transfusions, ineffective erythropoiesis and increased gastrointestinal iron
absorption lead to iron overload in the body. The management of the iron overload in these patients requires the
administration of iron chelators continuously and evaluation of serum ferritin levels at regular intervals. In the present study
serum ferritin levels, of the patients with beta thalassaemia major registered at two different centers of Rawalpindi and
Islamabad, were measured. Majority of the patients revealed very high ferritin levels, with a mean of 3390 ng/ml. 21.34%
patients had serum ferritin between 1000 to 2500 ng/ml, while 76% patients had values above 2500 ng/ml. These levels
reflect inadequate chelation and vulnerability to develop iron overload related complications. There is a dire need to
rationalize the chelation therapy, as at present no chelation, inadequate chelation, improper methods of chelators
administration, non availability of infusion pumps, non affordability of patients to purchase pumps and chelators,
inappropriate evaluation of iron overload and high levels of serum ferritin gives an overall bleak view.
Key words: Beta Thalasaemia major; Ferritin; iron chelators ………

         

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