P50 and 2,3 DPG content of erythrocytes were determined in 25 patients with heterozygous beta thalassemia minor to assess the adaptive mechanisms to anemia. 2,3 DPG levels were appropriately elevated for the degree of anemia. However, P50 values were not proportionately increased. No correlations were noted between hemoglobin level, 2,3 DPG, or P50 and the presence of symptomatic complaints of fatigue or weakness in these heterozygous patients.

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