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High School Knowledge and Attitudes towards Thalassemia in Southeastern Iran.

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Genetics of Non-Communicable Disease Research Centre, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran ; Department of Genetics, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.
Students Scientific Research Center, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.
Department of Health Information Technology, Zahedan University Of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.
Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.



Thalassemia (thal) is the most single gene disorders in southeast of Iran. About one quarter of total Iranian new thal cases were born in the Sistan and Balouchistan province so the aim of this study is to assess knowledge level and attitudes towards thal in high school students in Zahedan, capital of Sistan and Balouchistan province in Iran.


Cross-sectional descriptive survey.


This study was conducted on 762 Zahedan high school boys and girls students in 2009. The structured questionnaires were completed by students which consisted of three parts, namely demographic characteristics, knowledge part by 20 multiple choice questions and attitude part by 9 questions.


The results indicated that only 14.7% students had good knowledge, good knowledge towards thal was 16.2% in boys and 29.1% in girls (P-value<0.001), positive attitude was 76.7% in boys and 84.7% in girls (P-value<0.029). Negative attitude in students who were born in villages and cities were 33.3% and 20.7% respectively (P-value=0.04). Good knowledge level in experimental field studied was between 2-4-fold more than other field students. Students in the last year high school had more knowledge and more positive attitude. Students' knowledge score had no significant relationship with father education level (P-value=0.11) but had considerable difference with mother educational level (P-value=0.03).


It is concluded that long term and target based programs are suggested for high school students and local population of Sistan and Balouchistan where the trend of family marriages is quite high. These programs would impart valuable education and improve knowledge of people towards thal being couples in pre-marriage period and then after becoming parents thereby reducing the effects of disease.


Attitude; Education; Iran; Knowledge; Student; Thalassemia


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