sickle cell disease

Description

A genetic condition that affects hemoglobin (a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen and gives blood its red colour) and causes red blood cells to have an abnormal crescent (sickle) shape. The abnormal red blood cells can be damaged easily and die quickly, which can cause anemia (a reduction in red blood cells). They can also block small blood vessels, which can cause tissue and organ damage.

Also called sickle cell anemia.