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Ann Clin Biochem. 1995 Nov;32 ( Pt 6):521-6.

Testing for haemochromatosis in the diabetic clinic.

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  • 1Law Hospital, Carluke, Lanarkshire, UK.


Random serum transferrin saturation (TS) was measured in 1194 patients attending a diabetic clinic. Twenty-one patients had TS > 55% and in three of these patients repeat random TS was < 55%. Seventeen patients were recalled for fasting serum TS and ferritin measurement. Ten patients had fasting TS > 55%. The diagnosis of haemochromatosis was confirmed by liver biopsy in a total of six patients, three of whom were previously unsuspected. Haemochromatosis was the possible diagnosis in a further four patients. Family studies using HLA typing confirmed haemochromatosis in four family members, three of whom were asymptomatic. We conclude that measurement of TS is a simple and effective method of finding cases of haemochromatosis in the diabetic clinic.

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