The clinical significance of hemoglobinopathies.
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Hemoglobinopathies may be a significant clinical problem in certain racial groups. A patient presenting with obscure hemolytic anemia should, therefore, be investigated for hemoglobinopathies, particularly if he is of Mediterranean or southeast Asian descent. Longterm iron therapy should not be instituted on the basis of a hypochromic microcytic blood picture without documenting iron deficiency. When investigating polycythemia in young patients with normal white blood cell and platelet counts, hemoglobin oxygen affinity (P50) should be measured.
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