Dating a sickle cell patient

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D., a clinician-researcher, critical care medicine, National Institutes of Health Clinical Center. Inflammation in sickle cell disease is probably due to the blocking of the blood vessel by the misshapen red blood cells.

"Sickle cell disease's connection to inflammation made us want to investigate the molecule nitric oxide (NO), which is 'the WD-40' of the blood vessels," Gladwin says.

This can cause pain, infections and, sometimes, organ damage and strokes. Anemia happens when you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to the rest of your body. This means it’s passed from parent to child through genes. Sometimes a gene change can cause a gene to not work correctly.

A gene is a part of your body’s cells that stores instructions for the way your body grows and works. Sometimes it can cause birth defects or other health conditions.

Suwilanji, 23 takes folic acid pills and blood supplements everyday all because she has to keep her blood cells in shape.