In 2015 my partner and I found out we were expecting. It’s cliché to say, but we were over the moon – then the complications happened. Early in the pregnancy we went for the standard blood screening and were told about sickle cell disease (SCD). The first time I was learning about sickle cell was while pregnant at the age of 24. During an already stressful time, we found out that we were both carriers of the sickle cell trait and we were both none-the-wiser.
The midwives sat down with us to talk about the results, which was scary and overwhelming, especially as this was pretty much the first either of us had ever heard of the disease and the implications.
SCD can affect anyone, although it predominantly affects people from African and Caribbean backgrounds. Approximately 15,000 people in the UK have sickle cell disorder. When both parents are carriers, each time they're expecting a child there is a 25% chance of the child