Burden of cardiac siderosis in a thalassemia-major endemic population: A preliminary report from Pakistan

Najveen Alvi, Fateh A. Tipoo, Ahmed Imran, Muhammad N. Ashraf, Asim Qidwai, Mohammed Khursheed, Bushra Moiz, Salman N. Adil, Zehra Fadoo, Sadaf Altaf, Dudley J. Pennell, Babar S. Hasan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To describe the initial experience and demographics of T2∗ cardiac magnetic resonance-based myocardial-iron quantification of transfusion-dependent thalassemia-major (TM) patients from Pakistan and the correlation with serum ferritin. Methods: Eligible TM patients presenting between April 2014 and April 2015 to Aga Khan University Hospital, Pakistan, for T2∗CMR were included. The severity of myocardial-iron deposition was defined as follows: normal T2∗>20 ms, mild-moderate T2∗10 to 20 ms, and severe T2∗<10 ms. Cardiac symptoms were classified using the NYHA functional classification. Echocardiographic systolic and diastolic functions were performed. Continuous variables were presented as the median (minimummaximum value). Correlation was measured using the Spearman rank correlation. Multivariate logistic regression was used to determine factors associated with the NYHA functional class. Results: A total of 83 patients (49 male and 34 female) with TM, age 19 (5 to 45) years at presentation for T2∗CMR, were reviewed. At presentation, 70% of the patients were classified as NYHA class II or worse. T2∗<20ms was observed in 62.6% of the patients, with 47% showing severe iron deposition (T2<10 ms). No correlation of T2∗<20ms (r= -0.157, P=0.302) and T2∗<10ms (r= -0.128, P=0.464) was observed with serum ferritin. On multivariate analysis, lower T2∗ values correlated with a worsening NYHA functional class. Conclusions: There is a high prevalence of severe myocardial iron load in Pakistani TM patients. Serum ferritin did not correlate with T2∗ values. Lower T2∗ was the only clinical factor associated with the NYHA functional class.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)378-383
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Cardiac T2∗ MRI
  • Iron chelation
  • Serum ferritin
  • Thalassemia


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