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Give the Gift of Life During Sickle Cell Anemia Awareness Month


Sickle Cell Anemia affects more than 70,000 people in the United States, and most of them are African-American. September is Sickle Cell Anemia Awareness Month, a perfect time to make an appointment to give blood in support of the thousands of people across the country suffering from this disease. One in every 12 African Americans carries the trait for sickle cell disease.

One of the most common treatments for Sickle Cell Anemia, which causes red blood cells to form an abnormal crescent shape, is regular blood transfusions to help reduce the risks of stroke, damage to major organs that can lead to severe infections, and other complications that can arise from the disease. Many patients need blood transfusions every few weeks to help keep the effects of the disease at bay, and transfusions from blood donors of the same ethnic background are even more beneficial because they have less chance of causing complications for the recipient.

“Giving blood is an easy way to help someone in need and feel good about doing it,” said Red Cross National Celebrity Cabinet Member Patti LaBelle. “With so many people in our community suffering from sickle cell anemia, it’s also the right thing to do to help our neighbors and friends in need.”

Additionally, African Americans are more likely to have blood type O and B than other populations. These types are particularly in need, so scheduling a donation can also help alleviate blood shortages around the country.


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