This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.
Sir.—Rubin and Rowley's article in the Journal (1979;133:1248-1250) and Miller's editorial in the Journal (1979;133:1235-1236) on newborn screening for sickle cell anemia both suggest that in addition to the problems that can arise through difficulty in making a diagnosis of sickle cell disease during the postnatal period, there is the following problem: confusion within the medical profession both as to methods of diagnosis and definition and to the clinical picture of the varying clinical syndromes. β Thalassemia occurs in the following two forms in the black population: β+, in which varying amounts of hemoglobin (Hb) A are produced, and β°, in which no Hb A is produced. Both are characterized by a low mean corpuscular volume (MCV), an elevated Hb A2 level, and unbalanced α to β synthesis.
As Drs Rubin and Rowley indicate, the clinical picture may vary from a totally benign course to one indistinguishable from Hb
SMITH JA. Screening Newborns for Sickle Cell Anemia. Am J Dis Child. 1980;134(12):1180. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1980.02130240060026