Medical Dictionary


noun al·pha–thal·as·se·mia
variants: also


\ˌal-fə-ˌtha-lə-ˈsē-mē-ə\ play

Medical Definition of alpha–thalassemia

  1. :  thalassemia in which the hemoglobin chains designated alpha are affected The severity of alpha-thalassemia is directly related to the number of defects occurring in the four genes controlling synthesis of the alpha hemoglobin chain. Defects in one or two of the genes causes a condition that is asymptomatic or marked by mild anemia. Defects in three of the genes cause a condition marked by hemolytic anemia and enlargement of the spleen. Defects in all four genes is fatal and results in a fetus that is stillborn or critically ill with hydrops fetalis. —compare beta-thalassemia

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up alpha–thalassemia? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to cast off or become cast off

Get Word of the Day daily email!