Thalassemia | Symptoms

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What are the symptoms of thalassemia?

If you have thalassemia minor, you won’t have any symptoms. Symptoms of major thalassemia can include the following:

  • Paleness
  • Tiredness or low energy
  • Lightheadedness or shortness of breath
  • Lack of appetite
  • Dark urine
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes)
  • In children, slow growth and delayed puberty
  • Bone deformities in the face

Children who are born with thalassemia major may show signs of the disease right away, or these may appear later. Most signs and symptoms usually show up within the first 2 years of life. If your child has delayed growth, it’s important to find out if he or she might have thalassemia. Untreated thalassemia major can cause heart failure and infection.

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 02/11
Created: 11/09

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