Disorders passed from parents to children and inherited from generation to generation are called, “genetic disorders or diseases” (NIH, 2013). Thalassemia the focus of this paper is one such disorder. This disorder is linked to red blood cell abnormalities. A normal red blood cell delivers life-sustaining oxygen to every part of a human body, it also removes harmful gaseous waste product from the body by way of exhilaration. Hemoglobin, an iron-rich protein is a component of the red bloods cell which enable it perform its’ functions effectively (NIH, 2013).
What are Thalassemias?
Thalassemias are a group of blood disorders children inherit from their parents through genes. The body of a person with thalassemia will produce fewer red blood cells that are healthy with less hemoglobin than that of a person without this condition (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, 2013). When a person’s body produces red blood cell below normal, or less hemoglobin, a condition called anemia develops. NIH (2013) further states that, people with gene disorder of Thalassemia can present with mild, moderate, or severe anemia.
Thalassemia occurs when genes that controls the way the body produce hemoglobin are absent or altered (NIH, 2013). The human body makes red blood cells, white blood cell, and platelets. As earlier mentioned, red blood cell contain hemoglobin. Hemoglobin’s carry two different types of protein chains: the alpha globin and beta globin. The body of a person with Thalassemia will not function well due to inadequate or abnormal production of alpha or beta protein chain which in turn, affects red blood cells performance of their functions.
National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (2013) explained there are several identified types of Thalassemia’s, including alpha-thalassemia (alas, alpha thalassemia major or hydrops fetalis), beta-thalassemia (also called beta thalassemia intermedia, Cooley’s anemia, or Mediterranean anemia), (p. 1). Normal hemoglobin has four protein chains-two alpha globin and two-beta globin; defects in either of these protein chains gave rise to the names of the thalassemia’s (NIH, 2013, p.1). Alpha thalassemia traits present in a person missing one or two of the four genes (two from each parent) needed to create one alpha protein chain. If a person is missing more than two of the four genes, the person will have moderate or severe anemia (NIH, 2013, p.1). Alpha thalassemia major, or hydrops fetalis as they are called are the most severe form of alpha thalassemia, babies born with this disorder are either stillbirths or die shortly after birth (NIH, 2013, p. 1). On the other hand, people usually inherit two beta genes (one from each parent), beta thalassemia presents with alteration of one or both beta genes needed to create a beta globin protein chain (NIH, 2013, p. 1). When there are alterations of both beta globin chains, there present moderate or severe anemia so, the severity...