Sickle Cell Simply Explained
Sickle cell disease is the most common genetic disease world-wide. For a person to suffer the disease, he or she has to inherit the faulty gene from each parent. It affects millions of people in the world. It is a chronic illness of serious proportions. Medical, psychological and socioeconomic consequences place a great burden on sufferers and their Carers. In the past sufferers of sickle cell anaemia survived for a few years only.When only one sickle cell gene is inherited by a person with normal haemoglobin, the condition is referred to as the carrier state or the trait. Individuals with the trait have no medical problems under normal conditions of life. This is how the gene has been able to survive and be passed on from generation to generation. The trait can thus have serious implications for marriage and childbearing. It is therefore, imperative for people intending to have children to know about it in order to help prevent the disease. Sickle cell disease which was once thought to be restricted to only a few areas, especially among Black people, is now known to be world-wide. It has been described as a world—health problem.This book provides information in an easily readable format for everybody to understand sickle cell and its related conditions. There is the need for greater awareness and knowledge of the disease and the trait to avoid confusion, misunderstanding and myths, which hamper their proper management and prevention. At present there is no readily available cure for sickle cell disease. However, with proper management of the many ill-effects of the disease, sufferers can be assisted to live comfortable lives and for many years. Life-style measures are paramount and are referred to in some detail in the book. It is a great resource.
The author who is a doctor was born and educated in Ghana and had his postgraduate training in the United Kingdom. He has worked in sickle cell clinics and centres. He has lectured to various groups including Health Visitors, parents and Sickle cell workers and seen many patients. His easy approachability has brought him into contact with people from all walks of life whose queries he has helped to deal with. The author felt the need for such a book from the many different questions which various people have asked. He has also been encouraged to write it by many people interested in sickle cell disease. The book is the result of many years of experience and working in various aspects of sickle cell disease especially in children. It is hoped that it will reach as many people as possible including those in the remotest parts of the globe where medical services are lacking.He is the author of another book ‘Two hundred questions that mothers ask about their babies in the first year of life’