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Sickle Cell Disease

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On their side: an advocate for kids with sickle cell disease

Caring for kids is about more than treating their illness or condition—it’s about also caring for the whole family. That’s why family support services for children and families coping with sickle cell disease are a fundamental component of the Hemoglobinopathy and Sickle Cell Program at Children’s Minnesota.

Children’s Minnesota fundraiser supports kids fighting cancer and blood disorders

Children’s Minnesota is partnering with more than 30 local businesses during September for the Shine Bright for Cancer Kids campaign, the health care system’s annual fundraiser for its cancer and blood disorders program.

Hope for Mikayla and other kids living with sickle cell disease

Mikayla has been in the hospital more than 100 times. And she’s only 13. Born with sickle cell disease, a disease that primarily affects people of African descent, Mikayla endures severe pain, infections and even strokes.

Children’s Minnesota announces new Sickle Cell Program Medical Director

Children’s Minnesota is thrilled to announce that Derrick L. Goubeaux, DO, will step into the role of Sickle Cell Program Medical Director, following Dr. Stephen Nelson, who retired in early 2021.

Sickle cell disease and leukemia: One family’s resilience through them both

It’s difficult enough learning about one medical diagnosis for a child, but for the Hardy family, their youngest two daughters were diagnosed with two different illnesses within the same month. Read about their resilience on their journey with sickle cell disease and leukemia.

September: Sickle Cell Awareness Month

September is Sickle Cell Awareness Month. Did you know? Children’s Minnesota Hemoglobinopathy and Sickle Cell Program is a nationally recognized program. We’re sharing more about sickle cell disease to help shine a light on this disease.

Children’s Minnesota is Shining a Light on Sickle Cell disease

Children's Minnesota is recognizing the 10th annual World Sickle Cell Awareness Day.

Dr. Stephen Nelson and Ray Blaylark speak at the Minnesota Sickle Cell Coalition

Dr. Stephen Nelson, medical director of the vascular anomalies center at Children’s Minnesota, and Ray Blaylark, sickle cell patient health advocate, attended the Minnesota Sickle Cell Coalition to speak on racial disparities in sickle cell disease and the need for people of color on patient care teams.

Sickle Cell Disease

Red blood cells are produced in the bone marrow and contain hemoglobin, a substance that carries oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. Typical red blood cells are disc-shaped. In sickle cell anemia, the red blood cells become sickle-shaped, or in other words, shaped like a "C." Because of this, the red blood cells don't move easily through small blood vessels. They can get stuck, form into clumps, and block blood vessels. This can cause pain, infections and damage to the organs.

Hemoglobinopathy and Sickle Cell Program

Children's Hemoglobinopathy and Sickle Cell Program is a nationally recognized program that treats the majority of children and teens in Minnesota with abnormal hemoglobins and anemias. We treat the following types of anemias and hemoglobinopathies: