Sickle Cell Anemia

by: Kaitlyn Luther

Defintion

Sickle Cell Anemia is a genetic blood disorder where the oxygen carrying protein, Hemoglobin, becomes abnormally shaped.

Symptoms

  • Sudden attacks of severe pain
  • Constant pain
  • Anemia
  • Bacterial Infections
  • Stroke

Cause

This disorder occurs when each parent passes down the defective hemoglobin gene. Some people will only inherit one defective gene which will cause them to be a carrier. therefore they wont experience the symptoms however they could pass down the disorder to their children.

Cures

  • Vaccinations
  • Pain medications
  • Preventive Antibiotics
  • Blood transfusions
  • Some cases can be cured with a bone marrow transplant as well.

Diagnosis

  • blood tests
  • blood tests at birth (only allowed in some countries)
  • tests during pregnancy

Support Groups

There are many support groups for Sickle Cell Disease out there. One being the American Sickle Cell Anemia Association. They have a support group in Phoenix, Arizona which can be contacted at (602)- 254- 5048 and on their website which is listed below.