Dh200K spent annually on each thalassaemia patient

Dh200K spent annually on each thalassaemia patient Staff Reporter / 8 May 2013 The UAE spends huge amount of money for the treatment of thalassaemia with an estimated cost reaching nearly Dh200,000 per year per patient. This amount is spent primarily to keep the patient alive and not to attain full recovery. A further Dh1 million is required for a bone marrow transplant that would help cure the patient and save him/her from heart disease, liver and spleen failure, diabetes and other untreatable chronic diseases, which need medication in order to keep the patient alive and prevent any further complications. In order to raise awareness about thalassaemia, the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA) marked the International Thalassaemia Day with workshops and recreational activities for patients undergoing treatment at its hospitals and clinics across the emirate. Face painting during thalassaemia day activities in Abu Dhabi. Supplied photo Dr Ali Abdel Karim Obaidli, Executive Director of Medical Affairs at SEHA, underscored the importance of awareness about the dangers of this disease and the need for medical examinations and tests for couples about to get married in order to ensure that they are not carriers and thus avoiding giving birth to thalassaemic children. The fact that this disease is hereditary means that marriage between carriers of the gene will undoubtedly result in thalassaemic children. Hence, pre-marital medical tests to prevent this disease are highly important. The main signs and symptoms of the disease show in the form of acute anaemia in newborns, with a yellowish skin tone and low production of haemoglobin. Early detection of the disease, as well as, blood and medication transfusion usually lead to having a normal disease-free life, although the patient will still need a blood transfusion every three to four weeks for the rest of his life. olivia@khaleejtimes.com Taylor Scott International

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