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patient education

How Is Sickle Cell Disease Treated?

key information

source: National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute


Babies with sickle cell disease (SCD) should be referred to a doctor or provider group that has experience taking care of people with this disease. The doctor might be a hematologist (a doctor with special training in blood diseases) or an experienced general pediatrician, internist, or family practitioner.

For infants, the first SCD visit should take place before 8 weeks of age.

If someone was born in a country that doesn’t perform newborn SCD screening, he or she might be diagnosed with SCD later in childhood. These people should also be referred as soon as possible for special SCD care.

All people who have SCD should see their SCD care providers regularly. Regularly means every 3 to 12 months, depending on the person’s age. The SCD doctor or team can help to prevent problems by:
Examining the person
Giving medicines and immunizations
Performing tests
Educating families about the disease and what to watch out for

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