Annals of African Medicine

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Serum levels of antioxidant vitamins in foetal haemoglobin (HbF) persistent sickle cell anaemia children in Sokoto, Nigeria

NM Jiya, IK Matazu, LS Bilbis, RA Shehu


Background: sickle cell anaemia (SCA) is one of the commonest health problems of Nigerian children. Method: The serum levels of antioxidant vitamins A (retinol), C (ascorbic acid) and E (alpha-tocopherol) were determined in foetal haemogbobin persistent sickle cell anaemic (Hb SS + F), sickle cell anaemic (Hb SS) and normal (Hb AA) children.

Results: The levels of antioxidant vitamins in Hb SS+F children were found to be insignificantly different (p>0.05) when compared to those of Sickle Cell anaemic (Hb SS) children. While significantly higher values (p<0.05) of the vitamins in normal children (Hb AA) were observed when compared to those in HbSS+F and Hb SS children. The slightly less depressed levels of the antioxidant vitamins in Hb SS+F children may probably be attributed to the relatively less frequent sickle- cell crises often found in these individuals.

Conclusion: The less depressed serum levels of anti-oxidant vitamins in HbSS + F children may be contributory factor to their relatively stable clinical status. Therefore, it is recommended that HbSS + F children as well as HbSS children be placed on regular anti-oxidant vitamins – A, C and E supplement.

Annals of African Medicine Vol. 4(4) 2005: 168–171

AJOL African Journals Online