Sickle Cell Anemia

By: Cade Eddington, Poweless A3

Various names, causes, and what is affected by Sickle Cell Anemia

Sickle Cell Anemia may also be known as HBS disease, Hemoglobin S disease, and Hemoglobin SS disease: It can also be put into the category of Sickle Cell disease and Sickle Cell disorders. Sickle Cell Anemia is caused by a mutation. Normally the hemoglobin and cell is a flexible circle shape, but in this mutation the hemoglobin in cells make the whole cell a sickle shape. With the cell being this shape it is possible for it to get stuck when flowing through blood vessels. If these cells get stuck it will cause a blockage, causing some tissues to not got the blood and mainly oxygen they need. Sickle cell anemia is not unique to either the X or Y chromosome, but it always occurs on Chromosome 11.

Candidates and how Sickle Cell Anemia is inherited

Sickle cell anemia is the recessive gene; therefor, inherited from your parents. Both parents must have the sickle cell trait for their offspring to receive the disease. Even with both parents have the trait, with it being the recessive allele, their offspring still only has a 25% chance to has sickle cell anemia. Anyone can be a candidate as long as both parents have the trait.

Offspring and how they are affected

Sickle cell anemia is more common among African Americans. It is non preventable, meaning there is no way to prevent HBS. If you get the recessive allele from both parents there is no cure for the child to not have sickle cell anemia. The child who is born with sickle cell anemia still may have children in the future. The only way his or her offspring may be affected is if the partner of the person who has sickle cell anemia is a carrier of the disease.

Prenatal tests and Symptoms

Prenatal tests of Sickle cell anemia include amniocentesis, chorionic villus sampling (CVS), and fetal blood sampling. These tests gather fetal cells which then the doctors can examine and tell the patient if their child may have the disease. A symptom is pain crisis which may last from hours to even weeks. The pain is very substantial forming from the sickle cells being stuck and blocking blood and oxygen from flowing through vessels. Another symptom is called hand-foot syndrome and that is where hands and feet may get swollen; mainly in infants. Other symptoms may be frequent infections, delayed growth because of blockage of the flow of nutrients, and some vision problems.

Assistance and what to do with an affected child

A child with sickle cell anemia should go in for frequent tests and be given vaccines often to try to prevent infections. Also taking penicillin twice a day has shown to help reduce infections. Another test a child with sickle cell anemia should do somewhat often is cognitive testing because sickle cell anemia may cause thinking problems. They should also have a thing to do to let them relax and ease away the pain when they get a blockage. As the child grows keep doing regular tests and make sure to use the same relaxing method. He or she will need guidance throughout their teen years too. The child affected will have the same problem when they are young as when they are old: Pain crises, infections, vision problems. The child may grow out of hand-foot syndrome and delayed growth as they age. They should still take the same steps when trying to ease pain and prevent pain and infections.

Treatments and Research

There is no cure or treatment to permanently remove sickle cell anemia; there is only pain relievers and ways to slow down some pain and symptoms. A new cure has come about for sickle cell anemia. In this new cure doctors are transferring stem cells from siblings that are tissue-matched with the person affected by sickle cell anemia. Doctors are currently using this treatment on more people. They has successfully conducted twelve transplants and say the patients are cured. Although, the doctors are still developing this procedure more and more. As of now, only adults can be cured, no young people have been tested, nor are they thinking about testing it on them soon.