Sickle cell anemia is not curable and the life expectancy of the sufferers is usually reduced. In some the symptoms are so severe that they do not survive childhood while in others, childhood is symptom free.
However, so much has improved in these modern times and it has become possible for people with SCA to live longer and lead productive lives than they ever did in the past.
Growth is retarded in children with SCA and it is common for them to experience severe pain throughout their life. They also often endure severe emotional trauma due to the physical ill- being and uncertainty regarding their future.
Death occurs due to bacterial infection, stroke, hemorrhage or organ failure.