Based on what you know about blood, why would having a sickle cell anemia crisis result in a reduced red blood cell count, an elevated white blood cell count, and a reduced hematocrit? There’s a reduced RBC count, elevated WBC count, and a reduced hematocrit because of the shape of the RBC. The sickle cell anemia causes the RBC to have a different shape; a crescent and rigid shape and there are not a lot of them. So because of that, there’s more WBC and a reduced hematocrit. Also, the lack of RBC means less oxygen and causes infections so the WBC can fight off the infections.
Based on what you learned in the previous activity, why did having sickled red blood cells lead to the symptoms documented in Anna’s medical history when she was 14 months old? The sickled red blood cells became clotted; causing pain, breathing problems, pale skin and nails, and a fever. Due to the shape of the RBC, it’s easier for them to clot together and because less oxygen is going through the body, the skin becomes pale and she becomes lethargic.
Describe three ways daily life is affected for those who have sickle cell anemia. 1. Staying healthy – no sharing of food/drinks and washing hands regularly. 2. Get the right amount of oxygen – don’t play a contact sport or participate in a vigourous activity because could cause lack of oxygen which could be painful and cause you to be lethargic. 3. Stay away from injuries – an injury would be hard to heal due to the problems already in the blood.
Describe at least five symptoms of a sickle cell crisis.
1. Difficulty breathing – lack of healthy RBC makes it hard to carry oxygen throughout the body. 2. Fever – The lack of healthy RBC and oxygen makes the body more vulnerable to viruses, causing fevers. 3. Lethargic – due to the lack of oxygen, cells can’t make enough energy which can make a person feel lethargic. 4. Pain – in the chest, there’s pain b/c of lack of oxygen, making lungs work harder than they should and cause pain. In the leg, there’s pain b/c oxygen can’t make it all the way to the body parts and blood clots can cause it. 5. Paleness – lack of oxygen causes paleness in skin, nails, and lips.
5 Describe the pros and cons of the treatments used for each of the sickle cell anemia patients investigated in this activity. Pros: Live longer, fewer pain episodes, keep from getting acute chest syndrome Cons: Nauseous, tired, hair loss, jaundice, birth defects