Alterations of Hematology and Cardiovascular Systems
Sickle Cell Anemia
Ms. A is suffering from Sickle cell anemia. In this disease, the red blood cells appear in the shape of sickles or letter C. The normal red blood cells are disk-shaped. The disk-shape allows them to move smoothly in the blood vessels. Normal red blood cells have hemoglobin. The hemoglobin is responsible the red color. It helps in the transportation of oxygen. Sickle cells, on the other hand, have abnormally low hemoglobin, which results in the C-shape. This form is sticky and stiff and so cannot move easily through the blood vessels. Ms. A’s condition was a case of Menorrhagia as well as dysmenorrhea. The sickle cells lump together and block the flow of blood through the blood vessels leading to the organs and the limbs. Such blocked blood vessels may lead to pain, infections and even organ damage (Health 24, 2014).
Sickle cell anemia leads to a lower count of blood cells, since sickle cells die much earlier than normal cells. They are usually dead after around ten to twenty days but the body is not able to adequately replace them as the dying rate is much faster than the reproduction rate. This results in anemic condition. The condition is genetic and lasts for life. Individuals with the disorder have two sickle cell genes. Each parent contributes one of the genes. In cases where the person inherits one normal hemoglobin from one parent and an abnormal hemoglobin from the other parent, they exhibit sickle cell trait. Though such patients do not suffer because of the disorder, they are carriers. Their children can get the disorder if their partner has the disorder or has the trait (UoM, n.d.). A common symptom of the disorder is sudden pain through the whole body. Such a pain is identified as “Sickle-Cell-Crisis” or SCC. It affects the joints, bones, lungs, as well as, abdomen. This is the reason Ms. an experiences stiff joints (Health 24, 2014).
The low RBC (Red Blood Cell) count results in a condition called hemolytic anemia. A majority of sickle anemic people have levels of hemoglobin of around 8 d/dL. This is lower than normal. A chronic state results in inadequate oxygen. Consequently, the heart is pressurized to pump out excess blood to supply enough oxygen to the body. This increases the chances of heart attack or heart failure. At times, aplastic crisis may result. This occurs when the red blood cells producing red bone marrow cells stop working suddenly. The sudden halt is always triggered by parvovirus B19 (UoM, n.d.). The disorder can result in cessation of flow of blood to many parts of the body leading to a number of complications. The sickle cell crisis is the most serious. It can result in serious pain. Another serious effect can be the severe chest condition resulting from an infection or the lung’s blood vessels being blocked (UoM, n.d.).
Ms. A is suffering from sickle cell anemia. It is a condition when red blood cells become shaped in the form of letter C. The symptoms she has point to anemia. It is mentioned that she experienced shortness of breath and that her enthusiasm and energy levels were low. other symptoms are increased heart rate and feeling dizzy. Due to the blood vessels being blocked, this was accompanied by Menorrhagia as well as Dysmenorrheal. Her hemoglobin levels of 8g/d are the same as those with people with sickle cell anemia.
Health24. (2014, APRIL 30). The seven types of anaemia. Retrieved from Health24.com: http://www.health24.com/Lifestyle/Your-Blood/Anaemia-20130216-2
UoM. (n.d.). Sickle cell disease. Retrieved from University of maryland: https://umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/sickle-cell-disease
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