Q:

Can you die from sickle cell trait?

A:

Quick Answer

According to Dr. John Kark of the Howard University School of Medicine's Center for Sickle Cell Disease, sickle cell trait usually results only in mild or uncommon complications, if any. The condition can, however, give rise to serious and potentially fatal complications.

Continue Reading
Can you die from sickle cell trait?
Credit: Cultura Science/Michael J. Klein, M.D. Oxford Scientific Getty Images

Full Answer

Dr. Kark states that sickle cell trait is not commonly considered a disease, despite the malignant nature of some of its possible complications. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that most people with sickle cell trait do not have symptoms of sickle cell disease. Some people with sickle cell trait might experience complications associated with sickle cell disease, including pain crises. Increased atmospheric pressure, low oxygen levels associated with intensive exercise, dehydration and high altitudes are all circumstances that could pose a threat to some individuals with sickle cell trait.

According to the CDC, researchers do not fully understand why some people with sickle cell trait have complications and some do not. Intense athletic activity can pose a serious risk to people with sickle cell trait, but they can reduce their chances of becoming ill if they take care to keep their body temperatures at a lower level and avoid getting dehydrated. People with sickle cell trait who take part in such athletic activity should seek medical attention at the first signs of illness.

Learn more about Conditions & Diseases

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the symptoms of sickle cell disease?

    A:

    Symptoms of sickle cell disease include anemia, frequent infections, episodes of pain, delayed growth and vision problems. Hand-foot syndrome, or swollen hands and feet, may be one of the first signs of sickle cell disease in infants, according to Mayo Clinic.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Where can you find information about sickle cell disease online?

    A:

    Some online resources that provide information on sickle cell disease are the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, National Human Genome Research Institute and the University of Rochester Medical Center. All three resources have a wealth of information on topics like research, clinical trials and types of treatment options for this disease.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the symptoms of sickle cell anemia?

    A:

    Swollen hands and feet; episodes of intense pain in the chest, abdomen, joints or bones; and frequent infections are some of the leading symptoms of sickle cell anemia, according to the Mayo Clinic. Because the disease causes the body to have a shortage of red blood cells, it is also characterized by chronic fatigue. In infants, children and teenagers, sickle cell anemia can cause delayed growth and puberty.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the definition of "sickle cell trait"?

    A:

    Having a "sickle cell trait" means that a person has inherited the sickle cell gene from one parent. This differs from sickle cell disease, in which a person inherits the gene from both parents, notes WebMD. People with only one sickle cell gene can still pass it to their children.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore