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Cognitive Function may be Affected in Adults With Sickle Cell Disease, Study Suggests

Adults with sickle cell disease score worse than their healthy, unaffected siblings on cognitive tests, despite treatment with hydroxyurea, a study reports.

The study “Neurocognitive functioning in symptomatic adults with sickle cell disease: A description and comparison with unaffected siblings” was published in the journal Neuropsychological Rehabilitation.

Children and adults with sickle cell disease (SCD) often experience a shortage in blood supply, and strokes, that can severely affect their brain and lead to neurological impairments. Researchers believe the long-term consequences of these deficits in childhood are likely to have an impact on patients’ lives as adults. But neurocognitive functioning in adults with sickle cell disease remains poorly investigated.

To learn more, researchers evaluated specific cognitive parameters in symptomatic adults with SCD and compared the outcomes to their healthy siblings.