48 of 391 apparently healthy adult Saudi males had an AS hemoglobin pattern on electrophoresis, four subjects had an S pattern, and two subjects AC. A dithionite screening test lacked sensitivity and specificity in detecting hemoglobin S under the conditions of this study. A sickle cell trait frequency of 0.123 evidenced by hemoglobin electrophoresis correlates closely with previous studies of hemoglobinopathies in Saudi Arabs. The presence of four subjects with sickle cell disease in the study group provides further evidence of the ‘benign’ nature of sickle cell disease in Saudi Arabia.

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