World Sickle Cell Anemia Day

Sickle cell anemia is the most common inherited blood disorder which causes “sickle” shaped red blood cells in humans. These deformed blood cells stick with each other, blocks the blood flow and oxygen to reach the other parts of the body. This day is observed annually with the goal to increase public knowledge and an understanding of sickle cell disease, and the challenges experienced by patients and their families.

This sickle cell mutation occurs when negatively charged glutamine is replaced by a neutral valine at the sixth position of the beta-globin chain and this mutation is transmitted and is inherited by an autosomal co-dominant fashion. People suffer from severe pain and has to be treated with strong painkillers like morphine. Symptoms of sickle cell start showing from around 5 to 6 months of age and along with the pain a person can also suffer from anemia, swelling in the hands and feet, bacterial infections, blindness, bone damage and stroke.           The only available treatment to the sickle cell anemia is the stem cell transplantation. Genetic counseling is very vital to understand the possibility of inheritance of sickle cell anemia in the family history. Periodic checkups with the doctor is very crucial for the people suffering with sickle cell anemia to check the blood hemoglobin, Red Blood Cells counts etc.

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