6000 Babies Born With Thalassemia Major In Pakistan Annullay: Dr. Salma Shaikh


6000 babies born with Thalassemia major in Pakistan annullay: Dr. Salma Shaikh

HYDERABAD, Jan, 4 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 04th Jan, 2017 ) : Prominent Paediatrician Prof. Dr. Salmsa Shaikh has disclosed that around 6000 children are born every year with Thalassemia major in Pakistan.

While Talking to APP, Professor of Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Dr. Salma Shaikh said that thalassemia is on the rise in Pakistan, adding that thalassemia is genetic blood disease and amongst the most common inherited single gene disorder in the world.

She informed that carrier rate has also risen to about six per cent of the population and this figure could be increased further if preventive measures were not adopted with serious concern. According to statistics, she informed that annually an estimated 6,000 Thalassaemic children born in the country of them 60 to 70 per cent succumb to Hepatitis- B or Hepatitis-C and die before reaching the age of 10.

About Thalassemia, she added that it was a blood disorder and a common inherited disease with no cure, except bone marrow transplantation and a costly procedure entailing certain risks. Most of the patients of the genetic disorder have to endure blood transfusion for life, however, it could be controlled through prenatal diagnosis, she said and adding that mostly the disease prevails because of marriages among those individuals who have thalassemia minor.

In this situation there is a 25 percent chance that any pregnancy can result in a child with Thalassemia major, she added. The women with three months pregnancy should be brought at Thalassaemia Centres for test, she said and emphasized the need of launching a massive campaign for the prevention of Thalassaemia.

She observed that there were 25 per cent chances of having 'Thalassaemia major' in every pregnancy in case two Thalassaemia minor carriers got married. Dr. Salma said with the spotlight on blood borne diseases like Hepatitis C and Hepatitis-B, there is a general tendency in the country to ignore the threats of Thalassaemia.

Dr. Salma Shaikh said that due to rising incidence of the disease in the country, the government should do well to make parental testing for the fatal disease as a part of the pre-natal tests, which the health ministry regularly advocates through the mass media.

She informed that these tests should be available to the general public at subsidized rates at the government hospitals, so that a large section of people can benefit from this preventive measure.