Can Patients with Sickle Cell Anemia Qualify for Medical Marijuana Access in Pennsylvania?

Yes. Let TeleLeaf RX PA help you get started with a medical marijuana card.

Sickle-cell disease (SCD) is the most common inherited blood disorder in the United States. It is responsible for approximately 113,000 hospitalizations.

The US National Library of Health reported that the number of people with SCD in the US is about 100,000, and an additional 3 million people carry the sickle cell trait.

How Many People in Pennsylvania Have Sickle Cell Anemia?

In the Northeastern part of the United States, which includes Pennsylvania, there are around a total of 17,023 people who have sickle cell anemia. It was reported that 14,277 are African-American and 2,746 are Hispanic.

Can Medical Marijuana Help with Sickle Cell Anemia?

Symptoms common to many types of Anemia - Tele Leaf RX Opioids are currently the primary treatment for the chronic and acute pain caused by sickle cell disease.

But the rise of deaths associated with opioid use has prompted doctors to prescribe them less frequently, leaving patients with fewer options.

Medical marijuana appears to be a safe and potentially effective treatment for the chronic pain that afflicts people with sickle cell disease, according to a new clinical trial co-led by the University of California, Irvine researcher Kalpna Gupta and Dr. Donald Abrams of UC San Francisco.

If you’re seeking medical marijuana as an alternative option for your condition, you need to apply for a medical marijuana card.

What is Sickle Cell Anemia?

The terms sickle cell anemia and sickle cell disease are interchangeably used to describe the sickle-shaped red blood cells in this inherited red blood cell disorder.

Since sickle cell anemia is an inheritable trait. If you and your partner both have these traits, your child has a 25% chance of being born with sickle cell anemia.

Sickle cell disease occurs more often among people from parts of the world where malaria is or was common. This was reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

  • It is particularly common among those whose ancestors came from the following regions:

    • Sub-Saharan Africa
    • Spanish-speaking regions in the Western Hemisphere like South America, the Caribbean, and Central America Symptoms common to many types of Anemia - Tele Leaf RX
    • Saudi Arabia
    • India
    • Mediterranean countries like Turkey, Greece, and Italy
  • It is believed that people who carry the sickle cell trait are less likely to have severe forms of malaria
  • The exact number of people living with SCD in the U.S. is unknown
  • SCD occurs in about 1 out of every 365 Black or African-American births.
  • SCD occurs in about 1 out of every 16,300 Hispanic-American births.
  • About 1 in 13 Black or African-American babies are born with sickle cell trait (SCT).

Sickle cell trait is different from sickle cell anemia. It is a condition where a person has a mixture of normal and faulty hemoglobin in their red blood cells without having sickle cell disease.

Sickle cell anemia is diagnosed through a blood test where the type of hemoglobin present in the blood is analyzed.

Causes of Sickle Cell Anemia

There is no particular cause of sickle cell anemia because it is a genetic condition that is present at birth. It is an inherited trait and happens when a child receives two sickle cell genes from each parent.

Impact on Someone’s Lifestyle

The SCPA Sickle Cell Council reported that because of the unpredictable episodes of the acute and chronic pain that accompanies the disease, including damage to the organs, sickle cell anemia patients experience symptoms that can have a devastating impact on:

  • Daily activities Symptoms of anemia - Tele Leaf RX
  • School and work attendance
  • Social interactions
  • Emotional and psychological well-being

Sickle Cell Anemia Treatments

Treatments are available that can prevent complications and will vary depending on the severity of the symptoms.

  • Medication for pain
  • Blood transfusion to prevent stroke in children
  • Comprehensive pain management
  • Vaccines for increased risk of infection by seasonal flu, pneumococcus, meningococcal, and Haemophilus bacteria

Medical Marijuana for Anemia

Medical marijuana is an alternative medication for the chronic and acute pain caused by sickle cell anemia, according to a new clinical trial co-led by the University of California in July 2020.

As of today, there is no cure for sickle cell anemia, but there are treatments that can help alleviate the levels of pain that afflict patients, like medical marijuana.

If you have any questions about applying for a medical marijuana card, give us a call or fill out our form.

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