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Effective treatment for sickle cell underused by doctors
Date:6/17/2008

man patients as well. The review could not conclude with any confidence that hydroxyurea increased or decreased the risk of leukemia or other tumors, leg ulcers and pregnancy complications.

In the team's report, published in the June 17 Annals of Internal Medicine, they conclude that hydroxyurea be considered a viable treatment option, but emphasized the need for more quality research.

"It's clear from our literature review that hydroxyurea works, but we need to do much more work to understand how it works and the best ways to use it," Lanzkron says.

Sickle cell anemia, an inherited disorder that affects mostly people of African and Hispanic heritage, is named for the crescent- or sickle-shaped blood cells caused by the disease. The C-shaped cells periodically clump inside blood vessels, blocking circulation and causing severe anemia, increased risk of infections or strokes, and episodes of extreme pain that can last hours or days. About 70,000 people have sickle cell disease in the United States.


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Contact: Christen Brownlee
cbrownlee@jhmi.edu
410-955-7832
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Source:Eurekalert

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