Risk About Pregnant Women With Sickle Cell Anemia That Will Make You Think Twice

Pregnant Women with Sickle Cell Anemia
Pregnant Women with Sickle Cell Anemia
If you are suffering from sickle cell anemia and you are currently pregnant or at least trying to conceive, it is highly recommended that you consult with your doctor as soon as possible.

Having expert care is very essential since there are more painful episodes during pregnancy and your anemia may get worse. Aside from that, there are also a lot of risks connected to it.

Risks for the Mother

Sickle cell anemia is a major concern among pregnant women primarily because they are unable to carry red blood cells without any consequences to both the mother and the body.

pregnancy and sickle cell anemia

With the reduced amounts of body in the blood supply, it results in slow fetal development. For the mother, on the other hand, sickle cell anemia entails a greater risk for urinary tract infections, cystitis, gall stones, lung infections, as well as heart problems.

Risks for the Fetus

Because of the low levels of oxygen in the body due to sickle cell anemia, it entails a lot of risks to the fetus. Some complications include the possibility of a miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth, low birth weight, and poor development of the fetus.

Prenatal Care

Pregnant women with sickle cell anemia must consult their physicians immediately to ensure a thorough course of treatment; which normally involves frequent visits to the doctor for prenatal care.

More often than not, close fetal monitoring is necessary to ensure proper development. In fact, in some cases, blood transfusions are done. Proper nutrition with vitamin supplements is recommended.

Labor

Pregnant women suffering from sickle cell anemia who are in labor are managed with intravenous fluids in order to keep them hydrated. They are most likely to receive oxygen therapy through a mask. Fetal heart rate monitoring is also necessary to identify signs of fetal distress.

Learning about Sickle Cell Anemia in Pediatrics

Sickle cell anemia is a hereditary condition that has something to do with a defect in the gene formation of the red blood cells. Thus, it causes a lot of health problems if not managed effectively.

The diagnosis of sickle cell disease is already present even after birth. Newborn screening is one of the tests that infants should undergo in order to detect any possible hereditary conditions like sickle cell anemia.

If the result of the newborn screening is positive, the child undergoes a second test called hemoglobin electrophoresis in order to confirm the diagnosis.

Taking Care of Children with Sickle Cell Disease

Because children are susceptible to any form of infection, it is significantly important that they should have an early diagnosis of and treatment for sickle cell anemia.

Sickle Cell Anemia in Pediatrics

There are actually states that require newborn screening for every child born in order to detect sickle cell disease. Once the child is positive with the disease, it is very important that parents must seek medical attention immediately.

This is in order to prevent or manage any of these symptoms:
  1. Hand and foot syndrome: this condition affects the legs, arms, and feet. This condition is the first sign that can be seen in infants or children who have sickle cell anemia.
  2. Sickle cell crisis: this could occur at any time of any day and could last for hours, days, or even weeks. When an episode of crisis happens, medical attention is required. The child will need hospitalization in order for the crisis to be managed because, during this time, pain could occur at any part of the body, which the child may not be able to tolerate.
  3. Infections: people who are very young and very old are the most susceptible to infections. A child with sickle cell disease who experiences high-grade fever should immediately be brought to a doctor.
Sickle cell disease is quite hard to handle, especially if the patient is a child. So all means to manage or treat the condition should be done as much as possible.

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