Is it necessary to Perform Liver MRI T2* Earlier in Patients with Thalassemia Intermedia?


  • Arunee Jetsrisuparb
  • Jiraporn Srinakarin
  • Narumol Chaosuwannakit
  • Petcharakorn Hanpanich
  • Pairash Saiviroonporn
  • Patcharee Komwilaisak
  • Surapon Wiangnon


MRI T2*, thalassemia intermedia, iron overload, liver iron concentration


Background and objective :  Iron overload is an essential problem causing several complications in thalassemic patients, necessitating early diagnosis and treatment.  MRI T2* is widely accepted for measuring iron overload in the heart and liver. This study aim to evaluate the heart and liver iron concentration using MRI T2* at different levels of serum ferritin.

Patients and Methods:  We selected 30 patients with thalassemia intermedia; whose serum ferritin was 600–1,000, 1,001–2,000 and >2,000 mcg/ml.  Heart and liver MRI T2* were performed.   Iron markers and liver function were rechecked  on the same day of  MRI performing.

Results:  Twenty patients had HbEb-thalassemia: 3 HbH with Hb Constant Spring; 6 HbH with Hb Constant Spring and heterozygous HbE; and, 1 HbH with Hb Pakse and heterozygous HbE.  Median age was 14 years (range 10–31). All patients had non-transfusion dependent thalassemia but most received regular PRC transfusions every 3–4 weeks.  No cardiac abnormalities were found.  Of the patients with a respective serum ferritin <1000 and <800 mg/ml, 50% and 25% (6/12 and 2/8, respectively) had a median LIC >7 mg/g dry weight.  Serum ferritin had a fair correlation with LIC as did ALT:  both were statistically significant.

Conclusions:  Liver MRI T2* revealed iron overload in thalassemia intermedia at low serum ferritin levels.  More information is needed for reconsidering guidelines on investigation and treatment for iron overload in these patients.


How to Cite

Jetsrisuparb A, Srinakarin J, Chaosuwannakit N, Hanpanich P, Saiviroonporn P, Komwilaisak P, Wiangnon S. Is it necessary to Perform Liver MRI T2* Earlier in Patients with Thalassemia Intermedia?. SRIMEDJ [Internet]. 2014 Nov. 15 [cited 2024 Apr. 21];29(4):95. Available from:



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