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Sickle Cell Disease Pain Can Occur Daily and Is Much More Severe Than Previously Thought
Date:1/14/2008

eatment specifically for the disease. Other drugs can help symptoms and complications of the disease. Bone marrow transplantation can be curative.

Sickle cell disease causes both acute (rapid, severe, short-term) and chronic (long-lasting) pain. In sickle cell disease, the acute pain episodes are called crises. Previous studies of sickle cell pain have focused on crises.

In the current study, over half of the sickle cell disease patients completing up to six months of pain diaries reported having pain on a majority of days. Almost one-third had pain nearly every day.

"I believe that this study could change the way people view the pain of the disease. It is a chronic pain syndrome," said Dr. Smith. "And the study results have implications for medical care, and research. We need more drugs to prevent the underlying processes that cause pain in this disease. And we need better treatments to reduce the chronic pain and suffering that these patients go through."

Annals of Internal Medicine (http://www.annals.org) is one of the most widely cited peer-reviewed medical journals in the world. The journal has been published for 80 years and accepts only 7 percent of the original research studies submitted for publication. Annals of Internal Medicine is published by the American College of Physicians (http://www.acponline.org), the largest medical specialty organization and the second-largest physician group in the United States.

ACP members include 124,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internists specialize in the prevention, detection, and treatment of illness in adults.


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SOURCE American College of Physicians
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