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patient education

Sickle Cell Disease in Children: Care Instructions

key information

source: Healthwise

year: 2017

summary/abstract:

Sickle cell disease turns normal, round red blood cells into misshaped cells that look like sickles or crescent moons. The sickle-shaped cells can get stuck in blood vessels, blocking blood flow and causing severe pain. The sickle-shaped cells also can harm organs, muscles, and bones. It is a lifelong condition that causes anemia and puts your child at risk for bacterial infections. Sickle cell disease is passed down in families. Your doctor also may recommend that other family members get tested for sickle cell disease. Your doctor may treat your child with medicines. Some children get blood transfusions or a bone marrow transplant. Managing pain and preventing bacterial infections are important parts of your child’s treatment. Follow-up care is a key part of your child’s treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if your child is having problems. It’s also a good idea to know your child’s test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

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