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World Sickle Cell Awareness Day

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By Author: rajat ziffytech
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World Sickle cell awareness day has been held annually since 2008. The day hopes to raise and increase knowledge on Sickle cell disease or SCD and the struggles of the patients and their families go through. The resolution regarding Sickle cell disease was passed on 19th June 2008 by the General assembly in the UN. Every year on this day national and international programs around the world are held to raise awareness about the issue.

Every year organizations affiliated try to raise awareness about the disease and assisting patients and their families.
Several screening programs are conducted in various parts of the world. The day highlights various surgical and medical options available to treat patients. New parents are educated about immunization and other health care options available. Organizations help to address myths and stigma associated with SCD. Due to the Covid-19 crises this year, many of the seminars are being conducted online.

What is sickle cell disease?

Sickle cell disorders are a group of inherited blood disorders. It causes the “Sickle” shaped red blood cells to stick together. This prevents the flowing through smaller blood vessels, preventing the blood and oxygen from reaching various organs. The life-span of these red blood cells is also reduced.

The common types of sickle cell disease are:-
• HbSS or sickle cell anemia is the most severe form of the disorder. It occurs when the child inherits the sickle cell gene from each parent.
• HbSC is when one parent has the sickle cell gene. HbSC is less severe.
• HbS beta-thalassemia is when a person inherits the sickle cell gene from one parent and beta-thalassemia gene from the other.

Sickle cell diseases affect 5% of the world’s population. Hemoglobin disorders are caused by inherited mutant hemoglobin gene from both parents. Over 3 lakh babies are born with serious hemoglobin disorders every year. It is a common health problem in Asia and Africa. In India, sickle cell disease is more prevalent in North Maharashtra, South Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, and western Odisha. According to ICMR, 20% of children with the disease do not survive beyond the age of two.

Symptoms of sickle cell disease are:-
• Anemia
• Episodes of pain
• Frequent infections
• Vision problems
• Delayed growth or puberty
• Increased risk of infection

Symptoms usually appear when the child is 2 to 4 months old. But can show up in their adolescence. Book doctor in Patna If you or your child who have been diagnosed with SCD show the following symptoms:-
• Fever
• Unexpected severe pain
• Swelling in the abdomen
• Pale skin or yellow tint in the skin
• Signs of a stroke

The best doctors in Patna can diagnose SCD by ordering blood tests at home. If you or your partner has sickle cell disease the amniotic fluid (the fluid surrounding the baby) can be tested to determine if the unborn baby has the disease.

The best doctor in Patna treats sickle cell disease by pain management, relieving symptoms, and preventing complications. Treatment options include medication and blood transfusion. Some children and teenagers can opt for stem cell transplant as a possible cure.

In India, the Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK) is a program that helps to identify children under the age of 18 with congenital defects, diseases, and development delays. Sickle cell anemia is covered under the scheme.

Repeated blood and blood components transfusions are provided free of cost. The government hopes to prevent the disorder by better screening and awareness strategies. In 2018 the government drafted a policy to provide affordable healthcare for hemoglobinopathies.

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