Sickle cell disease is a blood disorder that causes a protein in red blood cells called hemoglobin not to function properly, preventing red blood cells from carrying oxygen normally throughout the body. Normal hemoglobin cells are smooth and round, while sickle cell hemoglobin cells become sticky and stiff, forming a sickle shape from which they derive their name. As a result of this shape, they tend to clump together and cause blockages in a patient’s capillaries.
Causes of Sickle Cell Disease
Sickle cell is an inherited disease, which means that it only affects people who are born with two mutated HbS genes. Those who only carry one of these genes are carriers of the disease but do not exhibit symptoms. Those who are carriers have an increased likelihood of having a child who has sickle cell.
Symptoms of the Disease
Every child who has sickle cell will exhibit slightly different symptoms, but there are some symptoms and complications that are particularly common. These include anemia, pain crises, acute chest syndrome, splenic sequestration, strokes, priapism, and jaundice. Because all organs in the body are affected by sickle cell, it can also cause increased infections, early gallstones, kidney damage, eye damage, bone damage, and leg ulcers.
A Cure for Sickle Cell
There is only one known Sickle Cell Disease Treatment in Columbus MS that is known to cure the disease. It is known as a stem cell transplant or a bone marrow transplant and is a risky procedure that is only appropriate for certain patients who are experiencing severe complications from the disease. Eligible children must receive bone marrow from a matched donor to prevent rejection.
Treatment for Sickle Cell
It is possible to seek out Sickle Cell Disease Treatment in Columbus MS without actually curing the disease. Medications can help children manage their pain and antibiotics can help to prevent infection. Patients who develop severe complications can also benefit from regular red blood cell transfusions.
Learn More Today
The first step toward treating this potentially devastating disease is to make an appointment with a specialist who can offer a detailed diagnosis. Meet Dr. Skis Kids today to learn more.