Sickle Cell Anemia Disease

Ashlee Haefer

What other names are there for this disorder?

Sickle Cell Anemia is also known as hemoglobin SC disease or Sickle Beta Thalassemia Disease.

What Causes The Disorder?

SIckle Cell is inherited and is most commonly found in African-Americans and Hispanics. 1 in 10 African-Americans have it and 1 in 100 Hispanics have it. If both parents have Sickle Cell, there is a 25% chance the offspring will have it.

What gene or chromosome is affected by this disorder?

Patients with sickle cell disease have a mutation in a gene on chromosome 11 that codes for the beta subunit of the hemoglobin protein

Are there prenatal tests for this disorder?

No, babies are screened as newborns.

Ashlee Haefer

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms of Sickle Cell include: reduced oxygen to the spleen, liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, or other organs, reduced life span, low red blood cell count, pain crisis, delayed growth, strokes, and jaundice.

What population is affected?

Mostly African-Americans are affected, but it is also common in Hispanics.

How is it inherited?

Sickle Cell Anemia is recessive.

What kind of medical assistance will the affected child need? Will further assistance be needed, as the child grows older? What is the long-term outlook for the child?

Babies and young children with sickle cell disease must take a daily dose of penicillin to prevent potentially deadly infections. Patients also take folic acid, which helps build new red blood cells. Doctors advise people with sickle cell disease to get plenty of rest, drink lots of water, and avoid too much physical activity. Blood transfusions are a common treatment. People with more severe cases of the disease can be treated with a bone marrow transplant. Life span is decreased by approximately 30 years.

Are there any treatments or cures?

Blood transfusions are common treatments. If patient's condition is too bad then a bone marrow transplant is required.

Could this disorder have been prevented?

No because it is a mutation to the 11 chromosome and you don't know about it until the baby is born. If both parents know they have sickle cell, they should not reproduce and adopt to help save America.

Can this individual have children in the future? Will those children be affected?

Yes they can have children. If both parents are carriers there is a 25% chance the kid will be normal, a 50% chance the kid will be a carrier, and a 25% chance the kid will have sickle cell. If both parents have sickle cell then the kid will automatically have it, therefore they should not reproduce. If only one parent is a carrier, then there is a 50% chance the kid will be a carrier.

What is the current status of research on this disorder? Is there a cure coming soon?

There is research continuing every day. St. Jude Children's Research hospital has one of the largest and most active Sickle Cell Disease Programs in the nation. They are looking to find breath-taking cures (no pun intended). There is no cure coming out soon.

Works Cited

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Disease Information Hematologic Disorders: Sickle Cell Disease. Copyright 2013.

Learn.Genetics Genetic Science Learning Center. Sickle Cell Disease. Copyright 2013.