Symptoms most often begin within 3-6 months of birth. Symptoms may include:
This form usually causes milder forms of the disease. It has with varying degrees of anemia.
This form can be asymptomatic or be a mild form of disease. The mild form is known as thalassemia intermedia. This form rarely needs extensive medical care.
This version usually has symptoms within the first two years of life. Children are pale and listless. They often have poor appetites. They grow slowly and often develop jaundice (yellowing of skin). It is a serious disease. It requires regular blood transfusions and extensive medical care.
Without treatment, the spleen, liver, and heart soon become very enlarged. Bones become thin and brittle. Abnormal deposits of iron in body organs can lead to organ failure. This is called secondary hemochromatosis . It most often affects the heart, liver, and pancreas. Heart failure and infection are the leading causes of death among children with untreated thalassemia major.
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