Get access

Redefining thalassemia as a hypercoagulable state


Address for correspondence: Maria Domenica Cappellini, M.D., Professor of Medicine, Universitá di Milano, Fondazione Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Mangiagalli, Regina Elena IRCCS, Milan, Italy.


As the life expectancy of β-thalassemia patients has markedly improved over the last decade, several new complications are being recognized. The presence of a high incidence of thromboembolic events, mainly in thalassemia intermedia patients, has led to the identification of a hypercoagulable state in thalassemia. In this review, the molecular and cellular mechanisms leading to hypercoagulability in thalassemia are highlighted, and the current clinical experience is summarized. Recommendations for thrombosis prophylaxis are also discussed.