Author Archives: Mary Shaniqua

Here’s What Triggers a Sickle Cell Crisis for Me

A sickle cell crisis is one of the main symptoms sickle cell patients face. However, just because we all experience the same symptoms, or similar ones, it doesn’t mean the condition affects everyone equally. As I meet more sickle cell patients, I’m further convinced that the condition affects each…

Trying a Different Medication to Address Iron Overload

Iron overload is a common side effect for sickle cell patients participating in blood transfusion programs. When this happens, the body’s excessive iron levels can cause an accumulation of iron in the body’s organs, which can lead to serious organ damage. I was diagnosed with iron overload…

My Birthday Wish for Sickle Cell Patients

I turned 31 on Aug. 20, 2020. That’s 31 years as a sickle cell patient, and what a journey it has been so far! As sickle cell patients, we are often exposed to all sorts of negative comments and stigmas surrounding the condition. So, I want to use my…

What Not to Say to Someone With Sickle Cell

Have you ever informed somebody of your diagnosis and found their response to be a little annoying? I often have. I try to extend grace in such situations because usually people don’t know what to say and, as such, speak without considering the ramifications. With that in mind, here are…

What’s Inside My Medicine Cabinet?

Living with sickle cell disease, I rely on several medications and treatments for various situations. In general, I take medications for my own well-being, as research shows that sickle cell patients who struggle to comply with medication regimens tend to experience a lower quality of life. Ergo, to have…

During Lockdown, It’s OK to Rest, Too

I was hospitalized on March 3 with a sickle cell crisis and discharged 12 days later. I then spent a week recovering at home. Under normal circumstances, I would have returned to “ordinary life” on March 23. But during that period, ordinary life changed significantly due to the…