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Year : 2023  |  Volume : 43  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 93-101

Do Egyptian children with beta-thalassemia major have specific cutaneous manifestations? A cross-sectional study

1 Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut Univesity, Assiut, Egypt
2 Dermatology, Venereology & Andrology, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut Univesity, Assiut, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
MD Aya Y Badran
Department of Dermatology, Venereology & Andrology, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut University, Assiut 71511
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ejdv.ejdv_32_22

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Background A wide continuum of cutaneous manifestations might accompany blood diseases and hemoglobinopathies, especially β-thalassemia. In this situation, cutaneous manifestations occur due to both hemoglobin disorder and treatment complications. These manifestations are usually neglected and frequently underdiagnosed among those patients. Aim To study the cutaneous manifestations in Egyptian children with β-thalassemia to minimize its subsequent complications. Furthermore, we aimed to analyze their relations to duration of disease and frequency of blood transfusions and other disease parameters. Patients and methods This was a cross-sectional study that included 158 patients with β-thalassemia major. All patients were subjected to detailed history, clinical examination, and laboratory investigations, namely, serum ferritin and hemoglobin level. All patients were subjected to meticulous dermatological examination by an experienced dermatologist to evaluate cutaneous manifestations. The data were analyzed using Student t test, Mann–Whitney U test, χ2 test, and Fisher exact test. Results Xerosis was the commonest encountered cutaneous change (present in 61% of patients), followed by hyperhidrosis (30%), hyperpigmentation (28%), pruritus and pityriasis alba (25%), urticaria (22%), and idiopathic guttate hypomelanosis, scars, ephelides, contact dermatitis, discoid eczema, nail disorders, melasma, tinea, alopecia areata, and warts in descending order. Statistically significant relations were present between the presence of some cutaneous manifestations and disease duration. Conclusion Cutaneous manifestations are common among Egyptian children with β-thalassemia major. Both xerosis and hyperhidrosis are the commonest cutaneous signs in those patients. Some of those cutaneous manifestations are correlated with disease duration and frequency of blood transfusions.

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