Erythrokinetic parameters were estimated in 21 patients suffering from haemolytic disease using a mathematical model of iron kinetics. A proper definition of radioiron reflux from red cells to the plasma proved to be essential for an accurate estimate of effective and ineffective erythropoiesis in severe haemolytic conditions. Erythropoietic activity was increased in all the patients, with the marrow capable of sustaining erythropoiesis at about 6 times normal in hereditary spherocytosis and 3 times normal in autoimmune haemolytic anaemia. This proliferative effort was countered by an increase in ineffective erythropoiesis which was especially marked in hereditary spherocytosis.
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