Thalassemia is a group of genetic blood disorders that affect approximately 1,000 individuals in the United States. The most severe of these disorders is Cooley's Anemia.
People with thalassemia have a genetic defect of their red blood cells that affects the cells' ability to produce normal hemoglobin. Red blood cells use hemoglobin to carry oxygen to tissues. As a result of the defect, most forms of thalassemia produce a chronic, lifelong anemia that begins in early childhood and often must be treated with frequent transfusions.
Pop Quiz -International Thalassemia Day
How much do you know about thalassemia? Take our quiz to find out.
(Published: May 6, 2013)
International Thalassemia Day: Rahul's Story
Read about Rahul's experience living with thalassemia and learn how you can help yourself or someone with the condition.
(Published: May 7, 2012)
CDC is developing a new program to
- establish a surveillance system to monitor blood safety for thalassemia patients.
- establish a network of specialized health-care centers to promote the management, treatment, and prevention of complications experienced by persons with thalassemia.
For more information
- National Heart Lung and Blood Institute
- Cooley's Anemia Foundation
- Thalassaemia International Federation
- Kids Health
Blood Disorders Fact Sheets
You can view, download and print the following fact sheets.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities
Division of Blood Disorders
1600 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30333
TTY: (888) 232-6348
- Contact CDC-INFO