Thursday, September 13, 2012 6:00-8:00 pm Jessie Turner Community Center Fontana, California 92336
Did you know one in 12 African-Americans has the sickle cell trait? Did you know that in the U.S. it is estimated that over 70,000 people suffer with sickle cell disease (SCD)?
Did you know sickle cell conditions are inherited from parents in much the same way as blood type, hair color and texture, eye color and other physical traits? While there is no cure for SCD, treatment options are improving. With the right medical help sufferers can lead long and full lives. The J.W. Vines Medical Society, the Inland Empire Black Nurses Association is proud to join Assembly Member Wilmer Amina Carter (D-Rialto) in celebration of Assembly Resolution 44 ~ Recognizing Sickle Cell Awareness Month.
Sickle cell disease is a condition in which the body makes sickle-shaped red blood cells, instead of the normal disc-shaped red blood cells. The sickle cells tend to be sticky, and can block blood flow in the blood vessels of the limbs and organs, causing pain, serious infections, and organ damage. SCD is a global health problem. About 1,000 babies are born with the disease each year in America. The average life expectancy of a person with sickle cell disease is 40 years. People with sickle cell trait are generally healthy. “Unlike heart disease and stroke, sickle cell is not on the public’s health radar,” said Carter. “The objective is to raise awareness. There are a lot of myths and misunderstandings out there.”
For example Myth: Sickle cell can result from infected blood, like HIV or hepatitis. Fact: Sickle cell disease or the trait is not infectious; it cannot be transmitted through blood. It can only be inherited from parents.
Myth: Only the black minority ethnic population suffers from sickle cell disease. Fact: Individuals of all different racial and ethnic backgrounds are affected by sickle cell disease. All ethnic backgrounds are now screened at birth for the type of hemoglobin responsible for causing sickle cell disease. If one parent has sickle cell anemia and the other is normal, all children will have sickle cell trait. If one parent has Sickle Cell Anemia and the other has sickle cell trait, there is a 50% chance (or 1 out of 2) of having a baby with either sickle cell disease or sickle trait with each pregnancy. When both parents have Sickle Cell Trait, they have a 25% chance (1of 4) of having a baby with sickle cell disease with each pregnancy. Sickle cell trait does not turn into sickle cell disease.
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