Sickle Cell Infection

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People with sickle cell disease are at an increased risk for life threatening infections. The spleen is an organ that serves as a filter to help remove bacteria from the bloodstream and also helps produce some white blood cells. Sickle cell shaped red blood cells can damage the spleen early in life. The damaged spleen is no longer able to filter bacteria out of the bloodstream. As a result, bacteria can travel through the bloodstream and in a few hours, cause an overwhelming infection. These infections can cause shock and even death. Every time a sickle cell patient has a fever it is considered an emergency it is important to treat the fever and start
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