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Home > Health > Medicine > Diseases > Thalassemia and Anemia Compared

Difference Between Thalassemia and Anemia

Thalassemia vs Anemia

There are different blood components in our blood and they perform different functions to keep our body fit and healthy. RBC or the Red Blood Cell is one such component of our blood and works as oxygen carrier in our body. RBC has hemoglobin molecule which binds the oxygen molecule and carry it from lungs to tissues in different parts of our body. Lack of RBC in blood stream leads to anemia and can lead to many complications. Severe anemia can even cause cardiac arrest. Thalassemia is a disease that causes severe anemia if left unattended. Anemia is detected by a simple blood test in which hemoglobin is measured.

What is Anemia?

Anemia is the decrease in the minimum number of RBCs in our blood stream required to perform the function of carrying oxygen to different parts of our body. Anemia can be caused by many things and the most common factor is malnutrition because if we do not take the proper diet that is rich in iron it results in iron deficiency that cause anemia. Anemia is also caused due to loss of blood because of an injury or a bleeding ulcer. Anemia can be cured by proper diet, medicines or blood transfusion.

What is Thalassemia?

Thalassemia is a genetic disorder in which body is not capable to produce RBCs leading to severe anemia. Thalassemia is caused by passing of mutated hemoglobin genes by the parents to the child. In this case parents live healthy throughout their life keeping mutated genes but their child suffers from thalassemia when two mutated genes are passed to him. Thalassemia causes severe anemia and is detected in the child within three months of the birth. The only solution to treat this type of anemia is blood transfusion.

What is the difference between Anemia and Thalassemia

• Anemia is caused by many factors but thalassemia is caused by mutation of genes.

• Anemia can be treated by proper diet and medicines but anemia caused by thalassemia has to be treated by blood transfusion.

• Anemia is caused by conditions but thalassemia is caused by inheriting it from parents.

• Anemia is preventable by proper diet and medication but thalassemia is prevented only when the parents know that they are carrying mutated genes and get tested for the fetus when it is ten weeks old.

• Anemia treatment is easy and cheap where as treatment of thalassemia is very cumbersome and costly.

• Anemia is cured in a very short period of time but thalassemia is not curable and one suffering from it has to undergo blood transfusion throughout his life.


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