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Background: Sickle cell anaemia (SCA) is associated with increased risks of multiple micronutrient deficiencies. Zinc deficiency has been observed in patients with sickle cell anaemia, due to chronic haemolysis with subsequent loss of zinc from red blood cells.
Objectives: The aim of this study was to assess the level of zinc and copper among Sudanese patients with sickle cell anaemia.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted from March to April 2018, involving forty Sudanese Patients who had been diagnosed of sickle cell anaemia, and had been admitted to Albuluk Hospital, in Khartoum State, like cases, forty age-matched healthy individuals with normal haemoglobin (HbA) were recruited as controls. The ages from 4 months to 16 years).Blood samples were collected and the levels of zinc and copper were measured, using atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Data analysis was carried out, using SPSS version, 21. Mean values were calculated and independent t-test was used to compare mean values in case versus the control group. Pearson’s correlation was used to find the relationship between zinc and copper and age.
Results: There was significant decrease in the mean levels of zinc and copper in patients with sickle cell anaemia, compared to control groups. The mean ± SD: 0.137±0.079 versus 0.705±0.138 mg/l, p, value= 0.00) for zinc. The values for copper were 0.512±0.290 versus 0.923±0.214 mg/l, p, value =0.00. There was no significant difference between males and females in the mean levels of zinc (p = 0.345) and copper (p = 0.656).There was weak correlation between levels of zinc, copper and ages, (r=0.052, p, value=0.750); for zinc, (r=0.122, p, value=0.452) for copper.
Conclusion: The levels of zinc and copper were decreased in patients with sickle cell anaemia, compared to healthy individuals. There was also a negative correlation between the levels of zinc and copper and age of patients.