INTRODUCTION: The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of the thalassemia disease group in Balikesir Province, Turkey.
METHODS: Blood samples provided by 11,558 individuals (5675 males and 5883 females) aged 3-90 years between May 15, 2018 and September 30, 2019 for laboratory analysis at the Balikesir Provincial Public Health Laboratory were included in the study. Hemoglobin chain analyses were carried out using the high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method. The data obtained were analyzed retrospectively.
RESULTS: The level of hemoglobin (Hb) A2 was >3.5% in 591 (5.11%) of the total study group and these individuals were identified as β-thalassemia carriers. The prevalence of the β-thalassemia trait was 5.76% in females and 4.44% in males. A total of 792 cases (446 female and 346 male) had a result outside the normal range: 74.6% were identified as thalassemia carriers, 9.4% had isolated low Hb A2, 12.3% had isolated Hb F elevation, and 3.8% had total abnormal hemoglobin values.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: The prevalence of β-thalassemia trait (5.11%) in the study group was extrapolated for the general population of Balikesir (2019 population: 1,228.620 ) and it was estimated that there were 62,782 potential carriers in the province.