Annals of Saudi Medicine
Publication of the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 153-155

Homozygosity for the Mediterranean a-thalassemic deletion (hemoglobin Barts hydrops fetalis)

1 Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, University of Dohuk, Dohuk, Iraq
2 Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, College of Medicine, University of Dohuk, Dohuk, Iraq
3 Department of Hematology, Azadi Teaching Hospital, Dohuk, Iraq

Correspondence Address:
Nasir A.S Al-Allawi
Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, University of Dohuk, Dohuk

DOI: 10.4103/0.


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Hemoglobin Barts hydrops fetalis syndrome is the most severe and generally fatal clinical phenotype of α-thalassemia. We diagnosed a fetus at 23-weeks gestation with having hydrops fetalis, by ultrasound. At 32 weeks, intrauterine death was detected. Molecular studies revealed that the fetus had the hemoglobin Barts hydrops fetalis syndrome due to homozygosity for the Mediterranean α-thalassemia deletion. This clinical phenotype is generally rare in the Eastern Mediterranean, and this is the first report of this syndrome from Iraq. Techniques for molecular characterization became available only very recently in this country, in a diagnostic setting. Thus, the detection of further cases might be expected in future.

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