, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Find the original article here: https://www.scdjournal.com/2018/12/14/you-know-nothing-about-sickle-cell-young-medical-graduate-tells-paediatrics-professor/

..and in my view.

Dr. George was right then and now. If possible, there should be a law that forbid carriers of the S or C genotype from marrying each other. Such legislation would be difficult to pass in any clime because you can’t legislate “love”, the central cord that binds and brings about marriage. It should and must be left to individual discretion to determine whom to love, marry or birth children with. However, I have strong confidence that aggressive, consistent, simple health education about sickle for everyone can effectively influence people’s choice of whom to marry, Hb-genotype-wise.

I am genotype AS myself, and I haven’t been forgiven by one of the best woman I should have married because I persistently refused to move our relationship proceedings to marriage because I COULD NOT FANTHOM GIVING BIRTH TO A CHILD WITH SICKLE CELL DISEASE, having seen first-hand and managed the pains and trauma that my patients with the disease suffer, and the limitless socioeconomic consequences for their family.

My then Fiancé preached, appealed and prayed for me to leave that to chance, and I consistently told her that I could not knowingly take such action against my yet to be born child. How would I look him/her in the face and say I knew but, was too selfish. Coincidentally, my first son was born with genotype AS, with her mother AA. Apparently, I contributed the S and the mother contributed the A. Only God knows what would have happened if the mother had an S to contribute.

Today, as in time past, I believe #ignorance, #selfishness and sometimes, #carelessness, are the “real factors” perpetuating the high prevalence of genotype S in the population. Effective health education via every channel with strong policy advocacy is the most effect way forward.!