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July 1987

The Painful Crisis of Homozygous Sickle Cell Disease: A Study of Risk Factors

Author Affiliations

From the Medical Research Council Laboratories, University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica.

Arch Intern Med. 1987;147(7):1231-1234. doi:10.1001/archinte.1987.00370070045007

• Some epidemiologic features of the painful crisis In homozygous sickle cell disease were examined in a retrospective study of 995 painful crises. Previously reported associations with cold weather and pregnancy were confirmed. There was a striking increase in painful crises in male patients between the ages of 15 and 25 years, whereas female patients showed little age-related change. The frequency of painful crises correlated positively with hemoglobin levels and reticulocyte counts in both sexes and negatively with mean corpuscular volume in female patients. There was a striking increase in painful crises in male patients with hemoglobin levels above 8.5 g/dL (>85 g/L). High hemoglobin levels appear to be an important risk factor for painful crises.

(Arch Intern Med 1987;147:1231-1234)