This 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. See PHIL 11694 for a colorized version of this image. 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. The 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.
Click here for hi-resolution image (5.49 MB)
|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.|