Magnified 8000X, this digitally colorized scanning electron microscopic (SEM) image revealed some of the ultrastructure displayed by red blood cells (RBCs) from a 6-year-old male patient that has sickle cell with hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin (S-HPFH). The persistent fetal hemoglobin reduces the severity of the consequences of the sickle cell disease, thereby, reducing the degree of cellular deformity, or sickling. Sickle cell disease encompasses a group of inherited RBC disorders. Healthy RBCs are round, and move smoothly through blood vessels. In sickle cell disease, the RBCs become hard, and sticky, and look like a C-shaped farm tool called a sickle. Sickle cells die early, which causes a constant shortage of RBCs. Also, when they travel through small blood vessels, they get stuck and clog the blood flow. This can cause pain and other serious problems.
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|Content Providers(s):||CDC/ Sickle Cell Foundation of Georgia: Jackie George, Beverly Sinclair|
|Photo Credit:||Janice Haney Carr|
|Links:||Sickle Cell Foundation of Georgia, Inc.|
|Copyright Restrictions:||None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.|