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Sickle Cell Crisis (cont.)

Sickle Cell Disease Prevention

Sickle cell disease is an inherited disorder that is common among African Americans. If you have sickle cell disease, you received the gene from each of your parents. If you received the gene from just one parent, you are a carrier. Genetic counseling and testing can give you information about the likelihood that you might pass on this gene to your children.

  • Prevention of infection
  • Infants and young children are at greatly increased risk of becoming infected with severe types of bacterial infections. Because of this increased risk, infants with sickle cell disease are placed on daily penicillin therapy until at least aged 5 years.
  • It is also extremely important that infants receive all their immunizations on schedule to prevent these life-threatening infections.
  • Subjecting yourself to conditions in which the oxygen concentration in the air is low may worsen sickling. This may include traveling in unpressurized airplanes or going to high altitudes.

Sickle Cell Disease Prognosis

In spite of the tremendous improvements in diagnosis, genetic counseling, neonatal screening, and medical care, the ever-increasing body of information may have falsely raised expectations for a specific cure. Progress on genetic manipulation, which has the potential to cure the disease, is slow.

Developments in long-term transfusion therapy have given promise in decreasing the severity of pain crises and the incidence of stroke;however,exposureto blood-borne diseases due to multiple transfusions is a risk.

Support and cure of infection arestill the mainstays of treatment.

Medically reviewed by Joseph Palermo, D.O.;American Osteopathic Board Certified Internal Medicine


"Overview of the management and prognosis of sickle cell disease"

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/8/2015
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