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This is an inherited blood disorder which is characterized by less hemoglobin and fewer red blood cells in one's blood than normal. The disorder results in excessive destruction of red blood cells which leads to anemia. Hemoglobin, present in your red blood cells enables the cells to carry oxygen. Low hemoglobin levels and fewer red blood cells in disorders such as Thalassemia may cause anemia, leaving you exhausted. Thalassemia is caused by mutations in the DNA of cells that make hemoglobin. This is the substance in one's red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body. There are different types of Thalassemia and this depends on the number of gene mutations that you inherit from your parents as well as which part of the molecule is affected by these mutations. The signs and symptoms of Thalassemia include: • Weakness • Fatigue • Shortness of breath • Irritability • Facial bone • Abdominal swelling • Dark-colored urine • Bone deformities • Yellow discoloration of the skin The factors that can increase one's risk of Thalassemia include a family history of this condition and people from certain races like the Greeks, people in Middle Eastern countries, Asians, and Africans. Please contact your doctor for a complete evaluation if your child has any symptoms that worries you!