alexa Gastrointestinal and hepatic complications of sickle cell disease.


General Medicine: Open Access

Author(s): Ebert EC, Nagar M, Hagspiel KD

Abstract Share this page

Abstract Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an autosomal recessive abnormality of the beta-globin chain of hemoglobin (Hb), resulting in poorly deformable sickled cells that cause microvascular occlusion and hemolytic anemia. The spleen is almost always affected by SCD, with microinfarcts within the first 36 months of life resulting in splenic atrophy. Acute liver disorders causing right-sided abdominal pain include acute vaso-occlusive crisis, liver infarction, and acute hepatic crisis. Chronic liver disease might be due to hemosiderosis and hepatitis and possibly to SCD itself if small, clinically silent microvascular occlusions occur chronically. Black pigment gallstones caused by elevated bilirubin excretion are common. Their small size permits them to travel into the common bile duct but cause only low-grade obstruction, so hyperbilirubinemia rather than bile duct dilatation is typical. Whether cholecystectomy should be done in asymptomatic individuals is controversial. The most common laboratory abnormality is an elevation of unconjugated bilirubin level. Bilirubin and lactate dehydrogenase levels correlate with one another, suggesting that chronic hemolysis and ineffective erythropoiesis, rather than liver disease, are the sources of hyperbilirubinemia. Abdominal pain is very common in SCD and is usually due to sickling, which resolves with supportive care. Computed tomography scans might be ordered for severe or unremitting pain. The liver typically shows sickled erythrocytes and Kupffer cell enlargement acutely and hemosiderosis chronically. The safety of liver biopsies has been questioned, particularly during acute sickling crisis. Treatments include blood transfusions, exchange transfusions, iron-chelating agents, hydroxyurea, and allogeneic stem-cell transplantation. Copyright 2010 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. This article was published in Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol and referenced in General Medicine: Open Access

Relevant Expert PPTs

Relevant Speaker PPTs

Recommended Conferences

Relevant Topics

Peer Reviewed Journals
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700 + peer reviewed, Open Access Journals
International Conferences 2017-18
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Annual Meetings

Contact Us

© 2008-2017 OMICS International - Open Access Publisher. Best viewed in Mozilla Firefox | Google Chrome | Above IE 7.0 version