Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Hematologic studies were performed on ambulatory, unhospitalized members of eight major tribes living in different geographic regions of southern Kenya. Where possible, malaria and sickle-cell disease rates were estimated, and the frequency of intestinal parasitic infection was determined. Within each tribe, hemoglobin values differed for age and sex; among the tribes, mean blood values varied with geographic setting and regional disease problems. Greater than 90% prevalence of anemia was found in tribes at sea level, but in high-altitude, inland regions, the frequency was only 10%, predominantly among the infants. Hypochromic, microcytic anemia that correlated best with hookworm infection was localized in tribes living along the Indian Ocean and around Lake Victoria. Diet did not appear to influence the hemoglobin levels, except in areas endemic for hookworm where inadequate iron replacement was found. Individual tribal hemograms were compiled for the use of hospital and public-health personnel working in these areas.


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