Thalassemia major is a genetic disorder and blood transfusion is critical for survival in these patients. Over the course of the past three decades, hyper transfusion therapy in these patients has shown has dramatically extended life expectancy and improved quality of life. Unfortunately,
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Thalassemia major is a genetic disorder and blood transfusion is critical for survival in these patients. Over the course of the past three decades, hyper transfusion therapy in these patients has shown has dramatically extended life expectancy and improved quality of life. Unfortunately, this type of therapy also increased the incidence of complications due to iron overload. The aim of this study was to assess bone mineral density (BMD) in patients with β-thalassemia major and to determine their biochemical and hormonal profiles that may affect BMD. A cross- sectional study was carried out in Sanjay Gandhi—PGIMS, a tertiary care hospital over period of 3 years on all β-thalassemia major patients above 7 years receiving regular transfusion. Patients with transfusion dependent anaemia other than β thalassemia major were excluded. Physical examination, laboratory tests and bone density measurements were performed. Then, the data were analyzed. The total number of children over 7 years of age with β-thalassemia major receiving regular blood transfusions during the study period was 150. Mean hemoglobin was 7.8 ± 0.6 g/dL and the mean serum ferritin level 5295 ± 2736 ng/mL. Short stature was seen in 54.7% boys and 28.7% of girls. Prevalence of lumbar osteoporosis and osteopenia were 42.5% and 37.5%. Femoral osteoporosis and osteopenia were present in 32.5% and 55% of the patients. Impaired puberty, hypothyroidism, diabetes mellitus, hypoparathyroidism were observed in 26%, 18%, 7%, and 15%, of patients, respectively. Nearly 75% of patients had low bone mineral density. Bone mineral density was significantly associated with short stature (p
= 0.002), hypogonadism (p
= 0.006), hypoparathyroidism (p
= 0.038), hypothyroidism (p
= 0.044) and vitamin D deficiency (p
< 0.001). High prevalence of complications among our thalassemics signifies the importance of more detailed studies along with therapeutic interventions.