Influence of blood transfusion rate on some clinical manifestations in β-thalassaemia major patients


  • Khalid Mahdi Salih Department of Biology, College of Sciences, Al-Mustansiriyiah University, Baghdad, Iraq
  • Wafaa Fawzi AL-Mosawy Department of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, Kerbela University, Kerbela, Iraq.



thalassaemia major, iron overload, liver enzymes, ferritin


Background The commonest form of life-long treatment for individuals with β-thalassaemia major (TM) is blood transfusion; however,
regular and multiple transfusion can result in iron overload as well as serious infections.
Objectives This study was designed to evaluate clinical manifestations in β-TM patients according to the blood transfusion rate.
Methods Forty-two patients of homozygous β-TM in the thalassaemia Division/Children’s Teaching Hospital, Kerbela in the middle part of
Iraq, during March–June 2015. All patients (17 males and 25 females) with age range 3–31 years were blood transfusion-dependent and
on iron chelation therapy. They were divided into three groups according to the yearly average of blood transfusion received during the last
3 years; those who received less than 16 times/year (G1, n = 16), between 16 and 21 times/year (G2, n = 14) and more than 21 times/year
(G3, n = 12). Several biochemical tests were carried out to estimate the serum level of ferritin, total serum bilirubin (TSB), GPT, GOT, alkaline
phosphatase (ALP), albumin and total protein.
Results The results showed that half of patients were presented either with splenomegaly (28.6%) or splenectomy (21.4%), about one
quarter of them (26.2%) were presented with hepatomegaly, more than half of patients (54.8%) were represented with HCV infection and
the majority (97.6%) of patients have normal BMI. However, results of biochemical markers revealed that all of patients (100%) have
albumin and total protein concentrations respectively, while all of them (100%) and the majority of them (76.2%) have elevated serum level
more than the upper limit of normal reference of ferritin and TSB respectively. Additionally, liver enzymes levels (GPT, GOT and ALP) also
recorded an elevation in about 31, 42.9 and 21.4% of thalassaemic patients. On the other hand, results demonstrated that increasing in the
rate of blood transfusion revealed an association with the reduction in the frequency of patients with normal liver, spleen and negative HCV
infection, and the three different groups of thalassaemic patients have significant differences in their age, BMI, rate of transfusion and total
protein. However, the rest of biochemical tests (ferritin, TSB, GPT, GOT, ALP and Alb) revealed non-significant differences in their serum
levels among the three groups of patients, but the percentage of patients that have elevated ALP were significantly different (0, 35.7 and
33.3%) (P = 0,029) among the G1, G2 and G3 respectively.
Conclusion Although blood transfusion is the commonest therapy to improve the life-span of β-thalassaemic patients worldwide, its rate
should be reduced as less as possible to avoid the serious complications by searching for another criteria to indicate transfusion rather than
haemoglobin concentration such as the antioxidant status of thalassaemic patients.




How to Cite

Salih, K. M., & AL-Mosawy, W. F. (2016). Influence of blood transfusion rate on some clinical manifestations in β-thalassaemia major patients. Journal of Contemporary Medical Sciences, 2(5), 15–19.