Abstract

An unusual family is described with a congenital bleeding disorder present in four males belonging to three generations. Of the three surviving affected males, all had splenomegaly and petechiae. The three had moderate thrombocytopenia (55–90 X 10(9)/liter) and markedly prolonged Ivy-template bleeding times (greater than 30 min). They were also noted to have reticulocytosis and, upon further investigation, imbalanced globin chain synthesis resembling that of beta-thalassemia minor. Studies on nine additional family members in four generations were normal except for slight elevations of reticulocyte counts in female members, one of whom had the abnormal globin chain synthesis ratio. In male members, the bleeding tendency and clinical signs always occurred in the presence of the globin chain synthesis defect and reticulocytosis. This previously undescribed condition was apparently transmitted as an X-linked disorder.

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