Prevalence of beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell traits in premarital screening in Al-Qassim, Saudi Arabia
2008 (English)In: Genetic Counseling, ISSN 1015-8146, Vol. 19, no 2, 211-8 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
To study the prevalence of beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell traits in the Al-Qassim region, Saudi Arabia. The Ministry of Health of Saudi Arabia launched a countrywide programme in February 2004 to allow all Saudis planning marriage to screen their carrier status for beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell traits. This population survey of mandatory premarital screening for beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell heterozygotes provided an opportunity to estimate the prevalence of these traits in the Al-Qassim region. From February 2004 to October 2006 all individuals attending for premarital screening in that region were screened. For each subject, venous blood was taken to determine complete blood count, red cell indices and hemoglobin electrophoresis. Subjects were considered to have beta-thalassaemia trait if mean corpuscular volume was <79 fl, mean corpuscular haemoglobin <27 pg and haemoglobin A2 level >3.5%; and sickle cell trait if sickle cell haemoglobin amounted to 35 to 45% and sickling test was positive. Totally 38,153 individuals were screened during the study period. The prevalence rates of beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell traits were 0.165% (63/38,153) and 0.252% (96/38,153) respectively. Compared with results of previous studies carried out in this region on the same issue, the prevalence of sickle cell heterozygotes seems to be the same but the frequency of beta-thalassaemia carriers is substantially higher. Screening for carriers both of beta-thalassaemia and sickle cell traits is important to prevent at risk marriages through genetic counseling.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 19, no 2, 211-8 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-120389ISI: 000256805900008PubMedID: 18618996OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-120389DiVA: diva2:303247