one in ten african-Americans carry the trait for sickle cell
Sickle Cell Disease is an inherited blood disorder that affects red blood cells and causes organ damage, anemia and lifelong episodes of pain. The disease most commonly effects African, Asian, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Central, and South American ancestry. Seventy thousand Americans are currently diagnosed with Sickle Cell Anemia. Sickle Cell disorders have been tested for at birth since 1987.
One in ten African Americans has the Sickle Cell trait. Sickle Cell traits are inherited from parents in much the same way as other physical traits. These traits never become Sickle Cell Disease, but knowing if you have the trait is important for family planning.
The James R. Clark Memorial Sickle Cell Foundation is a non-profit United Way agency serving sickle cell clients and their families in 15 Midland and Upper South Carolina counties.