SICKLE CELL (SCD)

What is Sickle Cell (SCD)?

Sickle cell disorders are a group of illnesses which affect your red blood cells. Sickle cell is a genetic condition, which means it is passed on from your parents and you are born with it; you cannot catch it from other people.

Sickle cell disorders causes your normally round and flexible blood cells to become stiff and sickle shaped, stopping the blood cells, and the oxygen they carry, from being able to move freely around the body and causing pain. This can cause  episodes of severe pain. These painful episodes are referred to as sickle cell crisis. They are treated with strong painkillers such as morphine to control the pain.

People with sickle cell are also at risk of complications stroke, acute chest syndrome, blindness, bone damage and priapism (a persistent, painful erection of the penis).

Over time people with sickle cell can experience damage to organs such as the liver, kidney, lungs, heart and spleen. Death can also result from complications of the disorder. Treatment of sickle cell mostly focuses on preventing and treating complications.

Symptoms of Sickle Cell

Chronic (long term) anaemia – when there are not enough red blood cells or Hb in your body.

Unpredictable Pain (crisis) – When the blood vessels get blocked, it can cause pain and swelling in the area, also known as a crisis.

You may get tired easily or experience fatigue – constant tiredness, feeling weak or lacking in energy because of the anaemia.

Jaundice – yellowing of the whites of the eyes and skin.

DID YOU KNOW?

SCD is inherited from both parents; sickle cell trait is inherited from one parent.

DID YOU KNOW?

SCD can affect anyone, although it predominantly affects people from African and Caribbean backgrounds.

DID YOU KNOW?

A simple blood test will tell whether you have sickle cell trait or the disorder

DID YOU KNOW?

Children with SCD are at increased risk for stroke, the risk is highest between the ages of 2 and 16.

DID YOU KNOW?

Episodes of pain may occur in sickle cell disorder and are generally referred to as a crisis

DID YOU KNOW?

The only possible cure for the disorder is bone marrow transplant but this is only possible for a limited number of affected individuals who have a suitable donor. A medicine called Hydroxyurea, can significantly reduce the number of painful crises.

The Sickle Cell Trait

Sickle cell trait is inherited when only one of your parents has passed on the sickle gene, and will never develop into sickle cell disorder. You do not have symptoms from sickle cell trait, so it is a good idea to have a blood test to see if you have sickle cell trait. If you have the trait, the majority of red cells in the blood are normal round shaped cells. Some sickle shaped cells may be present under certain conditions.

The trait is not an illness, but if you are planning to have children, then certain factors have to be considered.

If your partner does not have sickle cell trait, then any children you have will not have sickle cell disorder, but they could have the trait (50% chance).

If you and your partner both have the trait, there is a 25% chance that any child conceived may have sickle cell disorder and 50% chance they will have the trait. Find out more

The Sickle Cell Trait

Sickle cell trait is inherited when only one of your parents has passed on the sickle gene, and will never develop into sickle cell disorder. You do not have symptoms from sickle cell trait, so it is a good idea to have a blood test to see if you have sickle cell trait. If you have the trait, the majority of red cells in the blood are normal round shaped cells. Some sickle shaped cells may be present under certain conditions.

The trait is not an illness, but if you are planning to have children, then certain factors have to be considered.

If your partner does not have sickle cell trait, then any children you have will not have sickle cell disorder, but they could have the trait (50% chance).

If you and your partner both have the trait, there is a 25% chance that any child conceived may have sickle cell disorder and 50% chance they will have the trait. Find out more

OUR WORK

CHALLENGES OF SICKLE CELL CARRIERS IN THIS COVID19 PANDEMIC.

CHALLENGES OF SICKLE CELL CARRIERS IN THIS COVID19 PANDEMIC.

World Sickle Cell Day 2020 As we know, COVID-19 is an infection caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). SARS-CoV-2 is a newly identified pathogen that has not previously been seen in humans. It's highly contagious and has a different...

Health Alert for Patients and Caregivers

Health Alert for Patients and Caregivers

 March 17, 2020 March 17, 2020 – With COVID-19 on the forefront of nearly everyone’s minds, the Medical and Research Advisory Committee (MARAC) at SCDAA wants to provide information to our sickle cell community. Educating yourself about the coronavirus...

Sickle Cell Awareness Month 2019: “Breaking The Circle”

Sickle Cell Awareness Month 2019: “Breaking The Circle”

Sickle Cell Awareness Month 2019: "Breaking The Circle" Sickle Cell Foundation in collaboration with Life Transformation for Africa Initiative (LIFT4Africa) and Sickle Cell and Young Stroke Survivors joined the Global Community, Civil Societies and Organizations...

GALLERY 

Ways of Giving

Online donations are a simple and secure way to support our work.

GLOBAL GIVING

An individual donation – whether large or small – can make a powerful impact in the fight to save lives

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This