Type of disease: Rare conditions
Hemoglobin (Hb) Zurich is an inherited blood disorder. People with Hb Zurich have an abnormal form of Hb, a red blood cell (RBC) protein that binds to oxygen in the lungs. This abnormal Hb more readily binds to carbon monoxide (producing carboxyhemoglobin or COHb). Normally the level of COHb is less than 1-2% in adults. People with Hb Zurich tend to have COHb levels above 3%. The health effects of Hb Zurich tend to be mild compared to other inherited blood cell disorders. Symptoms usually develop only when the body is stressed due to an infection or fever or when exposed to certain drugs. Symptoms develop as a result of the premature breakdown of RBC (hemolytic anemia). Click here to visit MedlinePlus.gov and view an illustration of hemoglobin.
Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.