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Why does Sickle Cell affect so many Black people? And what are the chances that someone in your family carries the Sickle Cell Trait? We'll talk with Rev. Ronald Stephenson, M.Div, the President and Founder of the Greater Boston Sickle Cell Disease Association and learn more about their upcoming February 26th Day of Prayer.
Then we'll learn more about the various voter restriction laws passed between 2010 and 2011 that directly affect African American voters across the country. Many of these laws will have a major impact on the 2012 presidential election.
Stay tuned to today's show.
About Sickle Cell
Source: Center For Disease Control
What Is Sickle Cell Disease?
Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a group of inherited red blood cell disorders.
Healthy red blood cells are round and they move through small
blood vessels carrying oxygen to all parts of the body.
In SCD, the red blood cells become hard and sticky and look like a
C-shaped farm tool called a “sickle”.
Sickle cells die early, which causes a constant shortage of red blood •
Sickle cells can get stuck in small blood vessels and block the flow •
of blood and oxygen to organs in the body. These blockages cause
repeated episodes of severe pain, organ damage, serious infections,
or even stroke.
What Causes Sickle Cell Disease?
SCD is inherited in the same way that people get the color of their eyes,
skin, and hair.
A person with SCD is born with it.
People cannot catch SCD from being around a person who has it.
Who Is Affected By Sickle Cell Disease?
It is estimated that SCD affects 90,000 to 100,000 people in the
United States, mainly Blacks or African Americans.
The disease occurs among about 1 of every 500 Black or African-
American births and among about 1 out of every 36,000 Hispanic-
SCD affects millions of people throughout the world and is
particularly common among those whose ancestors come from sub-
Saharan Africa; regions in the Western Hemisphere (South America,
the Caribbean, and Central America); Saudi Arabia; India; and
Mediterranean countries such as Turkey, Greece, and Italy.
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Carole Copeland Thomas is a 27 year speaker, trainer and consultant specializing in global diversity, empowerment, multiculturalism and leadership issues.