Sickle Cell Anaemia

Sickle cell disease is an inherited disorder in which the shape of red blood cells are C-shaped sickles that can get stuck in blood vessels and block them. This blockage is called a sickle crisis or pain crisis. It is important to note that people with sickle cell disease are not called SICKLERS. It’s stigmatization and this act must end.

Treatments can ease pain and help prevent complications accompanied with the disease but there’s no effective cure for most people with sickle cell anemia. Usually, the round red blood cells move easily through blood vessels. The red blood cells are shaped like crescent moons or sickles in sickle cell anemia. These stiff, sticky cells may get stuck in small blood vessels, which block the blood flow and oxygen to parts of the body.

To be sickle cell positive means you have an

S component’ as part of the haemoglobin molecule as in AS, SS, or SC. It is only a person with ‘SS’ who will show symptoms to the disease. While the rest become carriers. In some instances, carriers show symptoms of Sickle cell disease.

SYMPTOMS OF SICKLE CELL

🔅Anaemia

🔅Pain ( extremities/ chest) due to blockade of the blood vessels

🔅Swelling of hands and feet

🔅Frequent infection coupled with fever

🔅Delayed puberty or growth

🔅Painful erection lasting for more than 4 hours (Priapism)

🔅Eye disorders

Management Of Sickle Cell Anaemia

Dealing with pain

1. Visit Hospital if unbearable. Don’t take every painkiller. The drug must be prescribed by a pharmacist or physician.

2. Look for pain triggers.

3. Drink loads of fluids about 8 glasses a day.

4. Eat right (balanced diet, rich in fruits and vegetables)

5. Exercise

6. Take your meds especially Folic acid which helps in producing blood.

7. Keep up with vaccines

Helping loved ones

Detect signs and symptoms and be a support system because the crisis is painful and depressing. For kids, do well to inform teachers.

Some harmful practices you need to avoid

1. Places with extreme temperatures, high altitudes (due to lack of oxygen)

2. Alcohol, smoking

3. Stress

4. Heavy physical labour.

Know your genotype before you say yes to that handsome guy or that beautiful lady who you wish to spend the rest of your life with…

Genotype and its appropriate suitor:

AA + AA = excellent

AA + AS = Good

AA + SS = Fair

AS + AS = BAD

AS + SS = Very bad

SS + SS = Extremely Bad (in fact, don’t try it) It should be noted that;

🔅You don’t want to put a child in extreme pain

🔅You can waste a lot of resources.

🔅In extreme cases, you could lose a child and all these can be prevented when you test. This genetic disease can be prevented if you make the right choices. Let me state again, that the child has done no wrong to come and suffer on earth.

Tips for eating a balanced diet:

🔅Drink plenty of non-caffeinated fluids each day; ask your doctor or registered dietitian how much fluid you should be drinking.

🔅Keep foods with you when you are away from your home, this will help to ensure that you have a healthy snack with you at all times.

🔅Try to have foods from at least 3-4 of the food groups each time that you eat; this helps you to eat a balance variety of foods throughout the day.

🔅Consult your registered dietitian for specific recommendations for weight loss or weight gain as appropriate.

10 thoughts on “Sickle Cell Anaemia

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