My heart feels cold, numb with emotions when i see patients who suffer from the SICKLE CELL ANAEMIA CRISIS. The pain they go through is unexplainable and unimaginable, their cries hit every nerve in my body and i wonder why these things happen.
I was in the Pediatrics wards the other day and i saw a 7 year old boy who was so irritable and in so much pain, he wouldn't even let us touch him. His mother was rolling in silent tears as she didn't want to let him know she was broken by his pain and tears.
The truth is that this SICKLE CELLS can be prevented in many ways and the most important way to fix this is by cross-checking blood groups compatibility with parents before they get married or get involved sexually. In our society now, it costs almost nothing to do a blood test, to find out your GENOTYPE and PHENOTYPE.
If you inherit one copy of the sickle cell gene (from one parent), you won't have sickle cell anemia. Instead, you'll have sickle cell trait.
People who have sickle cell trait usually have no symptoms and lead normal lives. However, some people may have medical complications.
People who have sickle cell trait also can pass the sickle cell gene to their children. The following image shows how two parents who have sickle cell trait can pass the sickle cell gene to their children.When both parents have a normal gene and an abnormal gene, each child has a 25 percent chance of inheriting two normal genes; a 50 percent chance of inheriting one normal gene and one abnormal gene; and a 25 percent chance of inheriting two abnormal genes.
Example of an Inheritance Pattern for Sickle Cell Trait
The major features of sickle cell anemia include:
- Fatigue and Anemia
- Pain Crises
- Dactylitis (swelling and inflammation of the hands and/or feet) and Arthritis
- Bacterial Infections
- Splenic Sequestration (sudden pooling of blood in the spleen) and Liver Congestion
- Lung and Heart Injury
- Leg Ulcers
- Aseptic Necrosis and Bone Infarcts (death of portions of bone)
- Eye Damage
- Other Features
The treatment of sickle cell anemia is designed according to which of the individual features of the illness are present. In general treatment is directed at the management and prevention of the acute manifestations as well as therapies directed toward blocking the red blood cells from stacking together. There is no single remedy to reverse the anemia. It is, therefore, important that family members have an optimal understanding of the illness and that communication with the doctors and medical personnel be maintained.
I woke up this morning with these thoughts in my heart and felt the need to communicate it to everyone and i am definitely glad i could accomplish it.
Lots of love.......