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patient education

Improving vaso-occlusive crisis (VOC) management for those living with sickle cell disease

key information

source: Pfizer Rare Disease

year: 2018


The Sickle Cell Disease Council For CHANGE (CFC) is a working group of passionate experts and advocates who are dedicated to elevating the quality of patient care for SCD VOC. The CFC aims to optimize acute care for VOC management, educate individuals with SCD and healthcare providers on the science of VOC, and empower advocates to raise awareness of patients’ needs.

Ideally, acute VOC management should begin with a thorough and rapid assessment of a patient’s pain on presentation. In particular, confirming that a patient is presenting with VOC, and not with a more life-threatening or limb-threatening situation, is critical. Patients with SCD presenting with VOC should be triaged at ESI level 2, similar to patients presenting with chest pain that may be related to acute myocardial infarction or neurological signs that may be related to stroke. Additionally, identifying other potential causes of a patient’s pain from their past medical history and other risk factors, along with the patient’s recent use of analgesics are necessary steps in the evaluation.


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