Thalassemia overview

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Thalassemia is the most common genetic disorder. It is an inherited blood disorder, characterized by fewer red blood cells and less hemoglobin in blood than normal. Hemoglobin is responsible for transport of oxygen in the body. The low amount of hemoglobin and fewer red blood cells of thalassemia may also lead to anemia. Some severe forms of thalassemia may involve organ damage, heart failure, liver damage, and even death.

Reportedly, there are about 240 million thalassemia carriers worldwide, and in India alone the number is around 30 million, with nearly 12,000 infants born every year with this genetic defect. This means that on an average 1 in every 25 Indians is a carrier of thalassemia.

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