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Doctor insights on: Are The White People Immune To Getting Sickle Cell Disease

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Are the white people immune to getting sickle cell disease?

Are the white people immune to getting sickle cell disease?

No: The beta-globin gene mutation that causes sickle hemoglobin has a higher frequency in those of african descent (conferring resistance to malaria) but is also seen in mediterranean and some asian populations--italians and greeks also have significant frequencies of beta-thalassemia. ...Read more

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Dr. James Ball
348 doctors shared insights

Sickle Cell Disease (Definition)

This is a genetic disorder in which hemoglobin is abnormally made., more common in people of african descent. This abnormality causes red blood cells to become stiff and fall apart. This can cause very specific symptoms: pain, pneumonias, strokes, spleen problems, and many other problems. Some have mild disease, some ...Read more


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Why is it that carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Why is it that carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Can be infected: Having Sickle Cell traits doesn't actually mean that a person can't become infected w/ Malaria. But, it certainly helps with resistance. In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality. Most of this protection occurs between 2-16..." ...Read more

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Can you please tell me why it'sthat only carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Can you please tell me why it'sthat only carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Sickle Cell /Malaria: In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality. Most of this protection occurs between 2-16 months of life, before the onset of clinical immunity in areas with intense transmission of malaria.” ...Read more

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How do you get tested for sickle cell disease?

How do you get tested for sickle cell disease?

Blood & hemoglobin: The first test is to do a blood test and/or smear to look for sickle-cell shaped red-blood cells. This is a tell-tale sign of sickle cell disease. The second is to do a test called a hemoglobin electrophoresis on the blood to test for any of the hemoglobin molecules such as a, c, s, f. Hemoglobin c and especially s are involved in sickle-cell. ...Read more

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Wanted to know if adults with sickle cell disease can get splenic sequestration?

Yes: Splenic sequestration can occur in any sickle patient. Frequently the spleen auto-infarcts by age 3, but if patient has had prior transfusions, their spleen could regrow and could potentially be able to have sequestration. Please discuss with your doctor. ...Read more

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Can white people get sickle cell disease? Or is this disease exclusive to black people?

Can white people get sickle cell disease? Or is this disease exclusive to black people?

Yes and No: The genes by which a person inherits skin color are different from the genes for inheriting sickle cell trait and disease. Therefore, in the U.S., where many people marry others with different skin colors, kids can be born with sickle cell trait or disease and have any skin color. The disease occurs in about 1 out of 400 black (racial) Americans, and 1 out of 16,000 Hispanic (ethnic) Americans. ...Read more

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People who have sickle-cell disease are resistant to malaria (they can't get malaria). How is this possible?

People who have sickle-cell disease are resistant to malaria (they can't get malaria). How is this possible?

They can get Malaria: In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality. Most of this protection occurs between 2-16 months of life, before the onset of clinical immunity in areas with intense transmission of malaria.” See: ...Read more

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How is it possible that sickle-cell disease are resistant to malaria, meaning they can't get malaria. how is this possible?

Sickle cell carrier: vs disease. People w/ both Sickle- cell disease & Sickle- cell trait can both be infected by malaria. However, sickle-cell trait (carrier) can have a protective function. In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality..." ...Read more

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If I have the gene for sickle cell disease, is it possible to not get the actual disease?

If I have the gene for sickle cell disease, is it possible to not get the actual disease?

Yes: One copy of the beta-globin gene mutation causing sickle hemoglobin is called sickle trait--the other normal copy (most genes are paired) makes sufficient normal globin to prevent disease. If you as a person with sickle trait (carrier of sickle cell disease) marry someone with sickle trait, then you have a 25% chance to have a child with sickle cell disease with each pregnancy. ...Read more

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