The combination of transfusion and chelation therapy has dramatically extended the life expectancy of thalassemic patients. The main objective of this study is to determine the prevalence of prominent thalassemia complications.
Two hundred twenty patients entered the study. Physicians collected demographic and anthropometric data and the history of therapies as well as menstrual histories. Patients have been examined to determine their pubertal status. Serum levels of 25(OH) D, calcium, phosphate, iPTH were measured. Thyroid function was assessed by T3, T4 and TSH. Zinc and copper in serum were determined by flame atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Bone mineral density (BMD) measurements at lumbar and femoral regions have been done using dual x-ray absorptiometry. The dietary calcium, zinc and copper intakes were estimated by food-frequency questionnaires.
Short stature was seen in 39.3% of our patients. Hypogonadism was seen in 22.9% of boys and 12.2% of girls. Hypoparathyroidism and primary hypothyroidism was present in 7.6% and 7.7% of the patients. About 13 % of patients had more than one endocrine complication with mean serum ferritin of 1678 ± 955 micrograms/lit. Prevalence of lumbar osteoporosis and osteopenia were 50.7% and 39.4%. Femoral osteoporosis and osteopenia were present in 10.8% and 36.9% of the patients. Lumbar BMD abnormalities were associated with duration of chelation therapy. Low serum zinc and copper was observed in 79.6% and 68% of the study population respectively. Serum zinc showed significant association with lumbar but not femoral BMD. In 37.2% of patients serum levels of 25(OH) D below 23 nmol/l were detected.
High prevalence of complications among our thalassemics signifies the importance of more detailed studies along with therapeutic interventions.
Zinc deficiency has been reported frequently in hepatitis C patients in the literature. Furthermore, a decrease in zinc level has been shown in beta thalassemia major as well. Iranians consume a large amount of phytate in their regimens which can bind with zinc and decrease its gastrointestinal absorption.
This study was designed to determine plasma zinc level in an Iranian sample with the diagnosis of hepatitis C with or without concomitant beta thalassemia major.
Patients and Methods
Between April 2011 and April 2012, plasma zinc level was determined via atomic absorption method, in 130 hepatitis C patients with or without beta thalassemia major in a known referral center of hepatic diseases in Tehran, Iran.
Mean ± standard deviation (SD) of plasma zinc levels was determined as 0.78 ± 0.22 mg/L. Also zinc level was 0.76 ± 0.19 mg/L and 0.80 ± 0.24 mg/L in thalassemic and non thalassemic patients, respectively. T-test analysis showed that there is no significant difference between these two groups regarding plasma zinc level (P = 0.235).
It is concluded that zinc level of studied patients is less than which is reported in normal Iranian population. Moreover, there is not a significant difference in plasma zinc levels between thalassemic and non thalassemic patients and it seems to be a common problem in both ones. Addition of zinc supplement may be recommended in both groups in order to optimize the nutritional support and probably improve the treatment response.
Zinc; Beta-Thalassemia; Hepatitis C; Iran
Repeated blood transfusion in beta thalassemia major patients may lead to peroxidative tissue injury by secondary iron overload. In the present study, 72 children with beta thalassemia major were included. Serum levels of total lipid peroxides, Iron, Total Iron Binding Capacity, Copper, Zinc, Vitamin E, plasma Total Antioxidant Capacity, activity of Erythrocyte Superoxide Dismutase, were measured. The findings were compared with 72 age matched healthy controls irrespective of sex. A significant increase in the levels of lipid peroxide and Iron (p<0.001), whereas, significant decrease in the levels of vitamin-E, Total Antioxidant Capacity and Total Iron Binding Capacity (p<0.001) was observed. Serum Zinc was significantly increased (p<0.001) with significant decrease in the levels of copper (p<0.001). Non Significant increase in the activity of Erythrocyte Superoxide Dismutase (p>0.05) was found in the patients when compared with controls. This suggest that oxidative stress and reduced antioxidant defense mechanism play an important role in pathogenesis of beta thalassemia major.
Beta thalassemia major; Oxidative stress; Antioxidants
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the levels of zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), iron (Fe) and zinc/ copper ratio in the serum of patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis in Qom Province, center of Iran.
Serum levels of zinc and copper were determined by flame atomic absorption spectrophotometer and serum iron concentration was measured by using an Auto Analyzer. The study group consisted of 60 patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis and the control group of 100 healthy volunteers from the same area who were not exposed to cutaneous leishmaniasis.
There were no statistically significant differences in age and body mass index between the two groups. Serum Zn (P< 0.001) and Fe (P< 0.05) levels were lower in patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis than the control group. We also found serum Cu concentration (P< 0.05) in the patient group was significantly higher than that of the control group. However, zinc/ copper ratio (P< 0.001) was lower in patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis than in the control group.
Our data indicated that Zn/Cu ratio was significantly lower in patients with CL as compared to the controls. Earlier reports suggest that, this ratio imbalance could be a useful marker for immune dysfunction in leishmaniasis. There was also strong association of Zn, Cu and Fe with CL. It suggests the use of blood zinc, copper, iron concentration and the copper/zinc ratio (Zn/Cu), as a means for estimating the prognosis of CL.
Cutaneous leishmaniasis; Zn; Cu; Fe; Zn/Cu ratio; Iran
Beta thalassemia major is an inherited disease resulting from reduction or total lack of beta globin chains. Patients with this disease need repeated blood transfusion for survival. This may cause oxidative stress and tissue injury due to iron overload, altered antioxidant enzymes, and other essential trace element levels. The aim of this review is to scrutinize the relationship between oxidative stress and serum trace elements, degree of damage caused by oxidative stress, and the role of antioxidant enzymes in beta thalassemia major patients. The findings indicate that oxidative stress in patients with beta thalassemia major is mainly caused by tissue injury due to over production of free radical by secondary iron overload, alteration in serum trace elements and antioxidant enzymes level. The role of trace elements like selenium, copper, iron, and zinc in beta thalassemia major patients reveals a significant change of these trace elements. Studies published on the status of antioxidant enzymes like catalase, superoxide dismutase, glutathione, and glutathione S-transferase in beta thalassemia patients also showed variable results. The administration of selective antioxidants along with essential trace elements and minerals to reduce the extent of oxidative damage and related complications in beta thalassemia major still need further evaluation.
Serum copper and zinc concentrations and 24 hour urinary copper and zinc excretion were determined serially from the beginning of treatment with D-penicillamine in four children with Wilson's disease. The data show a progressive decrease in both serum copper and zinc concentrations in all. Urinary copper excretion gradually levelled off to approximately 50% of initial values, but zinc excretion increased. Urinary zinc:copper ratios therefore increased with the duration of treatment. Copper elimination was considered adequate as soon as challenge with a test dose of D-penicillamine did not result in an increase in copper excretion. Urinary zinc excretion was increased further by the test dose. Zinc depletion was suspected clinically in one patient on D-penicillamine maintenance treatment. Lowering the dose alleviated the symptoms, urinary zinc loss decreased from 64 to 34 mumol/24 hours, and copper excretion remained largely unchanged. Data obtained indicate that D-penicillamine alters the metabolism of both copper and zinc. The extent of this is not only dose dependent but is also related to the efficacy of copper elimination. Both copper and zinc concentrations must by monitored to assess the benefits of treatment and the risks of inducing manifest or subclinical zinc deficiency.
The β-Thalassemia syndromes are the most common hereditary chronic hemolytic anemia due to impaired globin chain synthesis. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) plays several roles in angiogenesis which is a crucial process in the pathogenesis of several inflammatory, autoimmune and malignant diseases. Endothelial damage and inflammation make a significant contribution to the pathophysiology of β-thalassemia.
: The aim of the study was to assess serum VEGF level in children with beta-thalassemia major as a marker of angiogenesis.
A total of 50 children entered the study, 40 patients with thalassemia major and 10 healthy controls. We used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for quantitative evaluation of VEGF.
VEGF level was significantly higher in patients with β-thalassemia major than healthy controls (p=0.001). VEGF level was also higher in splenectomised thalassemic patients than non splenectomised ones (p=0.001). There were a positive correlation between VEGF and chelation starting age (p=0.008), and a negative correlation between VEGF and frequency of blood transfusion (p=0.002).
Thalassemia patients, especially splenectomized, have elevated serum levels of VEGF. Early chelation and regular blood transfusion help to decrease serum VEGF and the risk of angiogenesis.
Zinc and copper have important effects on T cell mediated immunity and on neutrophil function, but it is not known how the causes or effects, of low serum zinc and high serum copper relate to the clinical picture of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In this study serum zinc and copper determined by flame atomic absorption spectrometry and 30 other clinical, immunological, and laboratory parameters in 60 patients with RA were analysed by stepwise multiple linear regression analysis. Joint score index, rheumatoid factor titre, seropositivity, haemoglobin, and C reactive protein (CRP) were among the nine independent variables which together predicted 73% of the serum zinc variation. This suggests that there is an association between the immune-inflammatory rheumatoid process and the serum zinc concentration. CRP alone had only a 3% independent predicting value for serum zinc, however. This suggests that metallothionein mediated sequestration in the liver, induced by interleukin 1, is not an important explanatory factor in a cross sectional study of chronic inflammation. Furthermore, serum zinc did not have any predictive value at all for serum copper concentration. This does not support the hypothesis suggesting that serum zinc deficiency leads to high serum copper by inducing gastrointestinal metallothionein and high caeruloplasmin.
The uptake of copper and zinc by patients undergoing regular haemodialysis has been assessed by measuring the dialysis fluid for copper and zinc concentration, and the blood entering and leaving the dialysis coil for red cell copper, plasma free copper, and plasma zinc levels during priming of the coil and subsequent haemodialysis, and by in-vitro studies.
Red cells avidly removed copper from dialysis fluid when mixed with saline during priming, but did not take up copper during the haemodialysis. At both these stages plasma actively took up both copper and zinc from dialysis fluid, even against a concentration gradient, so that loss of these metals from plasma to dialysis fluid did not occur.
In the dialysis systems investigated the sources of the copper in the dialysis fluid were the copper plumbing of the tap-water and the dialysis coil, and the major source of zinc was the zinc oxide of the adhesive plaster around the dialysis coil.
To evaluate the correlations of the serum concentrations of copper, zinc, and manganese with lipid profile parameters of adult men in Mosul City, Iraq.
The study included 51 apparently healthy adult men as a control group aged 34-62 years (group 1), and 31 hyperlipidemic patients aged 37-60 years (group 2). Trace elements copper, zinc and manganese were determined using atomic absorption spectrometry. Concentrations of total cholesterol, triglyceride and high density lipoprotein cholesterol were determined using enzymatic method. Indirect serum concentration of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol were calculated via the Friedewald formula. Data were evaluated as mean and standard deviation by analysis of variance (ANOVA) and t-test.
The results indicated that there is a significant lower level of serum zinc in hyperlipidemic patients compared with the control group, while copper and manganese showed no significant differences between the two groups. A significant negative correlation was found between serum zinc and total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglyceride and low/high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio; while a significant positive correlation was found between serum zinc and high density lipoprotein cholesterol. In addition, a significant positive correlation between copper and triglyceride existed in the patient group, while the control group showed no such correlation.
Hyperlipidemia may possibly be related to a decrease in the level of serum zinc in hyperlipidemic adult men. The data also supports the concept that zinc supplementation might be useful in improving metabolic complications in subjects with hyperlipidemia.
Lipid profile; Trace elements; Hyperlipidemic patient
Sickle cell anaemia (SCA) is associated with zinc deficiency; zinc supplementation may ameliorate some of its clinical manifestations including the relief of painful crisis.
Subjects and Methods. Serum zinc levels were determined in 71 children with SCA and painful crisis and in equal numbers in steady state. Seventy-one children with AA genotype acted as controls. Qualitative assessment of zinc content of 24-hour dietary recall and the last meal consumed before blood was drawn was taken. Serum zinc was determined using atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Haemoglobin concentration and packed cell volume (PCV) were determined using standard methods.
Results. The mean serum zinc concentration in the study was less than international reference range. The controls had significantly higher serum zinc concentrations than the SCA group (42.7 ± 13.6 versus 32.3 ± 14.0 μg/dL, P < .000); this difference was due to the significantly lower values of serum zinc in SCA with painful crisis compared with the remaining two groups F = 30.9, P<.000. There was a positive correlation between serum zinc and haemoglobin concentration only in the control group (r = 0.4; P = .001).
Conclusion. The serum zinc levels in this study were low. Painful crisis in SCA may exert greater demand for zinc utilization in children with SCA thereby resulting in lower serum levels.
The thalassemias are among the most common genetic disorders worldwide, occurring more frequently in the Mediterranean region. The aim of this study was to determined frequency of sensory-neural hearing loss in major ß- thalassemias transfusion dependent patients in south of Iran.
A cross sectional study on 308 cases of major beta-thalassemia patients referring to Thalassemia Center of Shiraz University of Medical Sciences between 2006–2007 years. The diagnosis of ß- thalassemia major was based on clinical history, complete blood count and hemoglobine electrophoresis. Clinical data such as serum ferritin level, deferoxamine (DFO) dose, mean daily doses of DFO (mg/kg) and audiometric variables was recorded.
Out of 308 cases, 283 (96.5%) had normal hearing and 10 (3.5%) sensorineural hearing loss. There was no statically significant difference between two groups regarding mean age, weight, age at the first blood transfusion, age at the first DFO infusion.
We found the lowest incidence of sensorineural hearing loss in a large population of patients suffered from major thalassemia who received DFO. We show that DFO is not ototoxic at a low dose. When considering all related literature, as a whole there has been much critical misrepresentation about DFO ototoxicity.
Thalassemia; Sensorineural Hearing Loss; Blood Transfusion; Deferoxamine; Ferritin
The ideal management of thalassemia involves a multidisciplinary therapeutic team approach and should be preferably done at a comprehensive thalassemia care center with all sorts of specialists and the backup of a well-equipped blood bank. However, in developing country like ours, these facilities are not available in rural set up. So, a situation where conservative therapy with regular blood transfusion is the only choice left to innumerable thalassemic children.
To evaluate the existing conservative management protocol of Beta-thalassemia major patients in the setup of a subdivision level Government Hospital of rural West Bengal, India.
Materials and Methods:
The study was performed between December 2009 and December 2011. Beta-thalassemia major patients, registered in blood bank for moderate transfusion regimen, were taken in study. All the patients were screened for Transfusion Transmittable Infections at the time of registration and thereafter periodically every six months. Iron chelation therapy was given simultaneously with transfusion at a dose of 20 to 40 mg/kg/day for six days. The patients were advised to follow up with chelation therapy at home by daily infusion with a goal of maintaining serum ferritin level below 1000 ng/ml. Over this long period of study, the patients were periodically evaluated for complications.
The average blood requirement (ml/kg/year) in 1-5 years, 6-10 years, and 11-15 years were 110, 150, and 180, respectively. Incidence of Hepatitis C Virus infection in 1-5 years and 6-10 years were 1.75% and 2.08%, respectively. It is well seen that serum ferritin level increase with ascending age as does the blood consumption.
Conservative management may be the best alternative and at times the only hope for patients in developing country like ours. However, in order to decrease the disease load, steps need to be taken to introduce preventive measures.
Beta-thalassemia major; blood transfusion; conservative management; iron chelation; prevention program
A relationship has been reported between trace elements and diabetes mellitus. This study evaluated the role of such a relationship in 83 patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (40 men and 43 women), with a mean duration of diabetes of 3.9 +/- 3.6 years. Patients with nephropathy were excluded. Thirty healthy non-diabetic subjects were studied for comparative analysis. Subjects were subdivided into obese and non-obese. Diabetic subjects were also subdivided into controlled and uncontrolled groups; control was based on fasting blood glucose and serum fructosamine levels. Plasma copper, zinc and magnesium levels were analysed using a GBC 902 double beam atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Plasma zinc and magnesium levels were comparable between diabetic and non-diabetic subjects, while copper levels were significantly elevated (p < 0.01) in diabetic patients. Age, sex, duration and control of diabetes did not influence copper, zinc, or magnesium concentrations. We conclude that zinc and magnesium levels are not altered in diabetes mellitus, but the increased copper levels found in diabetics in our study may merit further investigation of the relationship between copper and non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.
Thalassemia is the most common monogenic disease in South-East of Iran. Despite the 70% reduction in Iranian thalassemia cases after thalassemia control comprehensive program, 601 affected babies were born in Sistan and Balouchistan Province, Iran from 2002 to 2010, so this study aims at investigating the causes of new thalassemia cases.
Data from this retrospective cross-sectional study was collected through interviews and information in the patients’ hospital records.
Data revealed that 52.4% of fathers and 78.4% of mothers of thalassemic children had elementary education or less. In addition, 78.6% of the couples did not undergo premarital screening for thalassemia and 71.2% of the couples were not notified of their own minor thalassemia until a child was born with major thalassemia. Of the diagnosed minor couples, about 25% did PND and the others did not carry out because mothers were unaware of proper gestational age and of the importance of this issue, financial problems, and the husbands’ disagreement to take the tests. Moreover, 16 mothers, in spite of being diagnosed of having a major fetus, refused to terminate the pregnancy.
The most preventable causes for affected births include couples’ unawareness of being minor and unawares of the PND importance and process.
Thalassemia; Prevention; Prenatal diagnosis; Premarital screening; Iran
Available accurate data on the concentrations of copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) in human milk throughout lactation and infant formulas is important both for formulating nutritional requirements for substances and to provide a base line for the understanding the physiology of their secretion. The objective of this study was to analyze the concentrations of zinc and copper in infant formulas and human milk during prolonged lactation. Levels of these metals were examined in relation to selected parameters such as age, weight, height, education and occupation of mothers.
Thirty mothers referred to the selected clinics in Tehran entered the study. Human milk samples were collected at 2 months postpartum. Zinc and copper concentrations were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometer.
The mean values of Zn and Cu in human milk were 2.95±0.77mg/L and 0.36±0.11 mg/L. The mean values of Zn and Cu in infant formulas were 3.98±0.25 mg/L and 0.53±0.17mg/L.
No significant relationship was found between levels of trace elements in human milk and evaluated parameters such as age, weight, height, education and occupation of mothers. The concentrations of zinc and copper in breast milk were lower than those reported in the literature.
Human milk; Infant formula; Zinc; Copper; Breast milk; Nutritional requirements
We investigated the trace element status in Crohn’s disease (CD) patients receiving enteral nutrition, and evaluated the effects of trace element-rich supplementation. Thirty-one patients with CD were enrolled in this study. All patients were placed on an enteral nutrition regimen with Elental® (Ajinomoto pharmaceutical. Ltd., Tokyo, Japan). Serum selenium, zinc and copper concentrations were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Serum selenoprotein P levels were determined by an ELISA system. Average serum levels of albumin, selenium, zinc and copper were 4.1 ± 0.4 g/dl, 11.2 ± 2.8 µg/dl, 71.0 ± 14.8 µg/dl, and 112.0 ± 25.6 µg/dl, respectively. In 9 patients of 31 CD patients, serum albumin levels were lower than the lower limit of the normal range. Serum selenium, zinc and copper levels were lower than lower limits in 12 patients, 9 patients and 1 patient, respectively. Serum selenium levels significantly correlated with both serum selenoprotein P levels and glutathione peroxidase activity. Supplementation of selenium (100 µg/day) and zinc (10 mg/day) for 2 months significantly improved the trace element status in CD patients. In conclusion, serum selenium and zinc levels are lower in many CD patients on long-term enteral nutrition. In these patients, supplementation of selenium and zinc was effective in improving the trace element status.
selenium; zinc; selenoprotein P; supplementation
Iron overload is an important issue in the state of thalassemic patients due to the harmful effect of high concentration of iron deposited in different tissues in human body including endocrine glands. In the present work, an attempt is carried out to estimate the effect of iron overload in thalassemic patients on the function of endocrine glands through the estimation of their ability to secrete adequate amounts of certain hormones.
Materials and Methods:
Seventy eight male children with beta-thalassemia, in the age-group of 4–11 years, were enrolled for this research. These children were being treated with frequent transfusions and long-term iron chelation therapy. Thirty age and sex matched children without thalassemia constituted the control group. Ferritin and different hormones were estimated by ELISA technique.
The results showed a mild reduction in the function of endocrine glands through the decrease in the level of some hormones. These changes due mainly to the hypoxia and precipitation of iron in certain glands and overlapping with the synthesis or secretion of the hormones.
There is a different hormonal disturbances in beta thalassemia patients. Reduction of total body iron store is an important goal of the treatment of thalassemia and measuring the hormones concentration is necessary for the follow up of the thalassemic patients especially during puberty.
Glands; hormones; iron overload; thalassemia
AIMS: Serum concentrations of tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF) were determined in beta thalassemic patients before and after bone marrow transplantation (BMT) to evaluate whether changes in TNF concentrations after BMT were related to immune mediated complications. METHODS: Serum TNF concentrations were determined by enzyme linked immunoassay (EIA) in paired samples from 71 patients with beta thalassemia before and after BMT. Serial samples from 13 patients were also studied for up to six months after BMT. Forty one normal healthy children matched for sex and age were studied as controls. RESULTS: beta thalassemic patients had high serum TNF concentrations before transplantation compared with controls. These were not related to sex, age, duration of disease, number of blood transfusions, transferrin concentrations or splenectomy. DQw1 positive patients showed significantly lower TNF concentrations than non-DQw1 cases. Patients with severe liver fibrosis had significantly higher TNF concentrations. No correlation was found between TNF values and BMT outcome before transplantation but TNF alpha values fell significantly after BMT. The decrease persisted only in patients with successful engraftment. In serial samples studied for up to six months after BMT, TNF values decreased but in four out of five patients with graft rejection and in all five with acute graft versus host disease (GVHD) sharp increases occurred at the time of clinical symptoms. No correlation was found between the degree of GVHD and serum TNF-alpha concentrations nor between TNF-alpha concentrations after BMT and the presence of bacterial, viral, and fungal infections. CONCLUSIONS: About 50% of beta thalassemic patients have increased serum TNF, and the changes after BMT are related to the occurrence of immune mediate complications. The persistence of low TNF concentrations after successful engraftment may be due to the preparative regimen and the lack of adverse immune reactions.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is an etiological agent responsible for occurrence of post-transfusion hepatitis in thalassemic patients. This study identified hepatitis C genotypes in pediatric and adolescent thalassemic patients and their correlation with age, blood transfusion, HCV RNA viral titer and liver function.
This study considers cross-sectional data from the Center for Thalassemia in Zahedan (Iran) carried out between August 2005 and September 2007. Twenty multitransfused patients suffering from β-thalassemia major and chronic HCV infection (13 males, 7 females) were included in the study. Patients were considered eligible for the study if they were seropositive for HCV RNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR) before initiation of evaluation. Blood sample was taken for HCV genotype and viral titer as well as biochemical markers. Type specific primer and real-time RT-PCR HCV were used for determination of viral genotype and HCV-RNA titer.
There was a significant positive correlation between serum HCV RNA titer and genotypes (P<0001). Serum HCV RNA levels were found higher in genotype 3a than in others. The most prevalent genotype in thalassemic patients was genotype 3a (40%) followed by 1b (25%), unclassified (20%) and la (15%). There was no meaningful relationship between genotype, Alanine aminotranferease, ferritin and alkaline phosphatase. Age, serum HCV RNA titer and number of transfusions were the only significant factors associated with genotypes (P<015, P<0.0001 and P<0.001 respectively).
This study showed that HCV genotype and viral titer are related to the number of blood transfusions received by thalassemic patients. Screening donated blood in blood banks would prevent the occurrence of hepatitis C in this high-risk group.
Hepatitis C; Virus Titer; Viral Load; Liver Function Tests; Thalassemia; Iran
In beta thalassemic patients, tissue damage occurs due to oxidative stress and it happens because of the accumulation of iron in the body. This study was conducted to determine the effect of zinc and vitamin E supplementation on antioxidant status in beta-thalassemic major patients.
This double blind randomized clinical trial was carried out on 120 beta thalassemic patients older than 18 years. Patients were randomly categorized in four groups. Zinc (50mg/day) and vitamin E (400mg/day) supplements were administered for former and latter group, respectively. In the third group both supplements were administered in similar doses. The fourth (control) group received no supplement. The effect of supplementations on serum zinc and vitamin E, superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GPX), total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and body mass index (BMI) were measured at the beginning and the end of the study.
Serum zinc levels in group 1 and 3 were significantly increased (P<0.007 and P<0.005, respectively). Serum vitamin E levels in group 2 and 3 were also increased significantly (P<0.001). Mean GPX activity in group1, 2 and 3 decreased significantly (P<0.015, P<0.032 and P<0.029, respectively). Mean SOD activity and TAC did not show significant change after supplementation. BMI had significant increase in all treated groups (P<0.001).
Our results suggest that beta thalassemic patients have enhanced oxidative stress and administration of selective antioxidants may preclude oxidative damage.
Vitamin E; Zinc; Glutathione Peroxidase; Superoxide Dismutase; Body Mass Index; Antioxidants
To study the blood serum zinc concentration in children with acute diarrhea (AD) in in-patient facilities before and after therapy.
There are several reports of zinc deficiency in pathogenesis of acute and chronic diarrhea. The literature review showed children with diarrhea and chronic gastroduodenitis performed zinc deficiency in majority of cases (1). The normal values of zinc in blood serum are 12.8–27.8 μmol/l (2). There is a threshold of 13μmol/l zinc concentration for zinc deficiency diagnosis. The zinc level 8.2 μmol/l and below is poor prognostic criteria (3).
Totally 102 children (1–14 years old) with AD in in-patient facility from different regions were studied for serum zinc concentration before and after treatment. Termez and Saraosie cities are located in south of Uzbekistan, in the region with high negative impact from the nearly Tajikistan located aluminum producing plant. The serum zinc level measured by neutron-activation method in the Institute of Nuclear Research (INR).
The zinc concentration in serum significantly varied by the region (Table 1).
The level of zinc in children from Tashkent estimated at lower normal limit with reduction below normal values after treatment. Children from Termez during admission to the in-patient facilities were zinc deficient with further reduction to the poor prognostic level. Children in Saraosie admitted to the in-patient with significant zinc deficiency that remained on poor prognostic level after treatment.
The study results may indicate the treatment of AD in children do not replenish the zinc to the appropriate level. Though some confounding factors may contribute the observed zinc disorders the results may indicate environmental factors, such as pollution by aluminum producing plant emission to contribute the difference in zinc concentration and should be considered for the correction and treatment of AD in children.
Acute diarrhea; zinc; zinc deficiency
Beta-thalassemia major is a chronic disorder of blood, having an extensive impact on the affected child. It involves lifelong therapeutic regime, with repeated blood transfusions. With improved life expectancy, due to improved medical management psychosocial aspects of thalassemia are gaining importance.
To assess the behavioral problems in multi-transfused thalassemic children and psychosocial factors affecting them.
The study was conducted in a tertiary care level hospital and research institute catering mainly to a population of low socioeconomic status.
The study was a cross-sectional study involving 50 multi-transfused thalassemic children of age 5–10 years.
Materials and Methods:
Fifty multi-transfused thalassemic children, aged 5–10 years, not suffering from any other major medical illness, were included. Child Behavior Check List (Achenbach) (CBCL) was used to collect data from each parent regarding the child's behavior. Parental Attitude Scale (Rangaswamy 1989) was applied. Descriptive statistical analysis was used with analysis of variance (ANOVA) and Student's t test to find the significance of data.
The CBCL total scores were high in 32% patients, indicating the presence of behavioral problems. Higher CBCL scores were found in children of older age group, those with poor school performance, whose mothers’ education was more than eighth standard, had history of death of thalassemic relative in family, greater duration of diagnosed illness, poor pre-transfusion hemoglobin level, and who had longer periods of school absenteeism.
Behavioral problems are common in multi-transfused thalassemic children. Early diagnosis and intervention of behavioral problems in these children would make them cope with thalassemia better.
Behavioral problems; child behavior check list; multi-transfused thalassemia
Most of the techniques for measuring iron stores such as serum iron concentration, iron binding capacity, serum ferritin level, liver biopsy can be troublesome or invasive for patients with thalassemia. The salivary iron measurement could be of potential advantage being an easy and non invasive approach for diagnosis of iron deficiency and iron overload . The aim of this study was to compare the levels of iron and ferritin in saliva and serum of patients affected by thalassemia or iron deficiency anemia. For this purpose, 96 patients with iron overload (71 with thalassemia major, 10 with thalassemia intermedia and 15 with thalassemia trait), 30 patients with iron deficiency anemia, and 35 healthy children as control group were involved in this study. Their saliva and serum iron and ferritin levels were measured. Iron and ferritin levels were higher in iron overload groups than in control group and lower in iron deficiency group (p<0.05). Furthermore serum and saliva iron and ferritin levels paralleled in all groups. In conclusion, iron and ferritin saliva can be routinely used for diagnosis of both iron overload and deficiency; furthermore this procedure may be an important advantage for blood donors being easily available and not invasive.
Zinc is an essential trace element with a prominent role in human nutrition. Zinc deficiency has been linked to growth retardation, hypogonadism in males, and lack of sexual development in females. It ranges from 50% in sub-Saharan Africa to 5% in high income countries. The aim of this study is to evaluate the prevalence of zinc deficiency in healthy children in Shiraz, southern Iran.
In this study, 902 children aged 3-18 years old were randomly sampled for serum zinc level. Age, sex, weight, height, BMI, stunting and wasting indices were also recorded. With atomic absorption spectrophotometry method, the serum level of zinc less than 70 µg/dL was considered as deficient.
Mean serum level of zinc was 122.3±55 µg/dL. The prevalence of zinc deficiency was 7.9%. There was no relationship among serum zinc level and age, sex, height, weight or BMI, but mild wasting (weight for age) and mild stunting (height for age) were significantly more prevalent among zinc deficient children compared to children with normal or high level of zinc.
Zinc deficiency in Shiraz is not as prevalent as other areas of Iran. It was significantly more frequent among stunted and wasted (malnourished) children. Difference in soil zinc level, recent wide prescription of zinc supplements by pediatricians and especial pattern of nutrition, considered as possible factors responsible for lower prevalence of zinc deficiency in Shiraz, deserve more investigations.
Zinc; Children; Malnutrition; Deficiency; Iran