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J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2014 Apr;36(3):173-8. doi: 10.1097/MPH.0000000000000127.

Acute hemolytic anemia as an initial presentation of Wilson disease in children.

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  • 1*Pediatric Department, Cairo University †Pediatric Department, National Hepatology and Tropical Medicine Institute, Cairo, Egypt.



Wilson disease (WD) is an inherited disorder of copper metabolism. Hemolytic anemia in WD occurs in up to 17% of patients at some point during their illness.


To screen for WD among children presenting with hemolytic anemia.


Twenty cases (mean age, 8.8 ± 3.9 y) with Coombs-negative hemolytic anemia, attending the hematology clinic of children hospital, Cairo University, were screened for WD by serum ceruloplasmin level, 24 hours urinary copper before and after D-penicillamine challenge test, and slit-lamp examination for detecting Kayser-Fleischer rings.


No case had low ceruloplasmin, whereas bilateral Kayser-Fleischer rings was detected in 5% of our cases. Urinary copper was elevated in 5% before and in 40% after D-penicillamine challenge test. According to the scoring system used, 1 case had definite WD and 7 cases were likely to have WD. These 8 (40%) cases were referred to as group B. Group B had a significantly lower hemoglobin, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin, and reticulocytes (P=0.04, 0.001, 0.04, and 0.04, respectively) and a significantly higher urinary copper after penicillamine (P=0.000) when compared with group A (unlikely WD).


WD is not uncommon in children with hemolytic anemia after exclusion of other common causes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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