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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 74-78

Impact of fetal hemoglobin on micronutrients in sickle cell anemia

Department of Medical Laboratory Science, School of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Mathias Abiodun Emokpae
Department of Medical Laboratory Science, School of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1658-5127.160205

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Background / Objective: The presence of persistent high fetal hemoglobin (HbF) in sickle cells disease (SCD) patients may be a modulator of clinical and biochemical features. This study seeks to test the hypothesis that high level of HbF may regulate the levels of calcium, magnesium, zinc, and copper in SCD patients in a steady clinical state. Materials and Methods: Serum calcium, magnesium, zinc, and copper were assayed in 100 SCD patients in steady clinical state and 50 control subjects using the colorimetric method while blood HbF was determined by alkaline denaturation method. Results: Twenty-five percent of the study group had high (>5%) HbF, while 75% had low (<4.9%) HbF levels. HbF (P < 0.001), serum copper (P < 0.001), and calcium (P = 0.002) were significantly higher in SCD patients compared with controls, while zinc and magnesium were significantly lower (P < 0.001) in SCD patient compared with controls. Serum calcium (P = 0.01) and copper (P = 0.118) were lower in SCD patients with high (≥5%) HbF while magnesium and zinc were significantly higher (P < 0.001) in SCD patients with high HbF compare with those with low (≤4.9). HbF correlated negatively with calcium (r = −0.25, P = 0.011) and copper (r = -0.11, P = 0.287) while magnesium (r = 0.60, P = 0.001) and zinc (r = 0.57, P < 0.001) correlated positively on HbF levels. Conclusion: HbF levels may have modulated the levels of these elements in SCD patients. It is suggested that HbF may be estimated along with hemoglobin electrophoresis in diagnosis, clinical management, and predicting clinical course of SCD patients. Nutritional studies may be routinely conducted in this group of patients for better management.

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