Samson Sule, a consultant paediatrician at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Lokoja, has advised sickle cell patients to steer clear of drug abuse.

Sule said this on Monday in Lokoja at the inauguration of an NGO, SAMVIC Eneche Health Trust Fund; a project of sickle-cell anaemia intervention.

According to him, sickle-cell is an inheritable, genetic and fatal disease which causes red blood cell disorders, classified as sickle cell anemia and which may lead to death, if not properly managed.

“Sickle cell disease (SCD) is not the end of life and not a dead sentence, if properly managed with adequate knowledge and support the patient will survive.”

The consultant, who delivered a special lecture on sickle-cell anaemia, also said adequate management could prevent patients from having frequent crisis.

“Once you have ‘S’ gene in your blood, you are a carrier of the sickle cell but not the disease itself; all the same, you must be careful in selecting your life partner.

“The SS genotype is due to the abnormal formation of sickle-shape cell, instead of the normal disc shape of the blood cells, ’’he said.

He, therefore, advised parents to know their status and encourage their children to do same.

“For parents who delivered sickle cell children; it is not the end of life, it can be managed through drugs, taking enough water, regular check-up, prompt treatment of injury.

“Sickle cell patients should also avoid drug abuse, indulging in traditional practices such as tribal mark, incision and circumcision,” Sule said.



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