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Sickle Cell Quiz Answers

Question 1. Sickle cell anemia is a serious disease that:

The correct answer is B. Sickle cell anemia is an inherited, lifelong disease. In sickle cell anemia, the body makes sickle-shaped, or crescent-shaped, red blood cells. Sickle cells are stiff and sticky. They tend to block blood flow in the blood vessels of the limbs and organs. You can’t prevent sickle cell anemia, but lifestyle changes and treatments can help relieve symptoms and treat complications.

Question 2. In the United States, sickle cell anemia mainly affects which group of people?

The correct answer is C. In the United States, sickle cell anemia mainly affects African Americans. The condition occurs in about 1 in every 500 African American births. About 1 in 12 African Americans has sickle cell trait.

Question 3. In the United States, sickle cell anemia is diagnosed:


The correct answer is B. In the United States, all States mandate testing for sickle cell anemia as part of their newborn screening programs. It's also possible for doctors to diagnose sickle cell anemia before birth using a sample of amniotic fluid or tissue taken from the placenta. (Amniotic fluid is the fluid in the sac surrounding a growing embryo. The placenta is the organ that attaches the umbilical cord to the mother’s womb.) Testing before birth can be done as early as 10 weeks into pregnancy.

Question 4. A common symptom of a sickle cell anemia crisis is:

The correct answer is C. Sudden pain throughout the body is a common symptom of sickle cell anemia. This pain is called a "sickle cell crisis." Sickle cell crises often affect the bones, lungs, abdomen, and joints. The pain may be acute (sudden) and can range from mild to severe. It can last from hours to as long as a week or more. Chronic pain often lasts for weeks to months.

Question 5. If you have a child who has sickle cell anemia, it's important to:

The correct answer is E. If you have a child who has sickle cell anemia, learn as much about the disease as possible. This will help you recognize early signs of problems, such as fever or chest pain, and seek early treatment.

Your child will need to see the doctor often for blood tests. The doctor also will check your child for any possible damage to his or her lungs, kidneys, and liver. Talk with the doctor about your child's treatment plan, how often he or she needs checkups, and the best ways to help keep your child as healthy as possible.

Sickle cell centers and clinics can give you information and counseling to help you handle the stress of coping with your child's disease.


This ends the quiz on sickle cell anemia. More information on the condition is available at the NHLBI DCI Web site