Prevalence of hepatosplenomegaly in beta thalassemia minor subjects in Iran

Eur J Radiol. 2009 Jan;69(1):120-2. doi: 10.1016/j.ejrad.2007.09.027. Epub 2007 Oct 29.


Introduction: Thalassemia is the most common hereditary blood disorder in the world. Iran is located on the thalassemic belt and there is a high prevalence of the hepatosplenomegaly in beta thalassemia minor patients which is reported to be very variable. The goal of this research was to study the frequency of these signs in the cases with beta thalassemia minor patients in Iran.

Materials and methods: Two hundred and fifty-nine cases that referred to center for pre-marriage tests were divided into two groups according to their MCV, MCH, and HbA2 (beta thalassemia minor cases and control groups). Liver and spleen sizes were determined by ultrasonographic method and the two groups were compared with each other.

Results: Average spleen volumes in case and control groups were 163.48+/-133.97 and 126.29+/-53.98mm(3), respectively. Average spleen lengths in case and control groups were 10.71+/-1.52 and 10.60+/-5.4cm, respectively.

Conclusion: In the regions with high frequency of beta thalassemia, in case of finding large spleen size in the ultrasonography, a probable harmless differential diagnosis will be beta thalassemia minor that is not indicative of any serious disease. Volumetric measurement of spleen is more reliable for detection of splenomegaly in these patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iran
  • Liver / abnormalities*
  • Liver / diagnostic imaging*
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • Spleen / abnormalities*
  • Spleen / diagnostic imaging*
  • Ultrasonography
  • beta-Thalassemia / diagnostic imaging*
  • beta-Thalassemia / epidemiology*