Sickle Cell Disease

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

It is possible that the main title of the report Sickle Cell Disease is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.


  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Sickle Cell Trait

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Sickle cell disease is a rare inherited blood disorder. It is characterized by the presence of sickle or crescent shaped red blood cells (erythrocytes) in the bloodstream. These abnormally-shaped cells become rigid and lodge themselves in the very tiny blood vessels (capillaries) of the peripheral blood system (blood vessels outside of the heart). The capillaries become clogged, preventing the normal flow of oxygen to tissues. Common symptoms associated with sickle cell disease include chest pain, frequent infections, yellowing of the skin (jaundice), and low levels of circulating red blood cells (anemia). Sickle cell disease has several recognized forms including sickle cell anemia, sickle cell hemoglobin C disease and sickle cell thalassemia disease. Sickle cell disease is inherited as an autosomal recessive trait.


March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation
1275 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10605
Tel: (914)997-4488
Fax: (914)997-4763

Piedmont Health Services and Sickle Cell Agency
1102 East Market Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
Tel: (336)274-1507
Tel: (800)733-8297

Cooley's Anemia Foundation, Inc.
330 7th Ave
Suite 900
New York, NY 10001
Tel: (212)279-8090
Fax: (212)279-5999
Tel: (800)522-7222

Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc.
231 East Baltimore Street
Suite 800
Baltimore, MD 21202
Tel: (410)528-1555
Fax: (410)528-1495
Tel: (800)421-8453

NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
P.O. Box 30105
Bethesda, MD 20892-0105
Tel: (301)592-8573
Fax: (301)251-1223

Sickle Cell Association of Ontario
3199 Bathurst Street Suite 202
Ontario, M6A 2B2
Tel: 4167892855
Fax: 4167891903

Cochrane Cystic Fibrosis and Genetic Disorders Group
Institute of Child Health, University of Liverpool
Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust
Liverpool, L12 2 AP
United Kingdom
Tel: 441512525696

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223

Madisons Foundation
PO Box 241956
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Tel: (310)264-0826
Fax: (310)264-4766

Sickle Cell Awareness Group of Ontario
1280 Finch Ave W, Suite 517
Ontario, M9M 2Z3
Tel: 4167454267
Fax: 9058300850

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site or email

Last Updated:  4/9/2008
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