African Americans with the genetic trait that could lead to Sickle Cell Disease may be twice as likely to also develop kidney disease later in life. That's according to the findings of a new report published with the help of two doctors in Mississippi.
The findings which were published in the Journal of American Medical Association include data collected from more than 36 hundred residents living in Central Mississippi. Doctor Adolfo Correa is the interim director of the Jackson Heart Study -- one of the groups that conducted research into the connection. He says the medical community used to think the trait itself didn't cause any other diseases.
"There had been no studies in the past that had looked at the impact of sickle cell trait on chronic diseases until this particular publication came out," says Correa.
Jeanne Julious-Tate is with the Mississippi Sickle Cell Foundation. She says the findings are just another hurdle people with the trait and the disease have to face.
"You can get consumed in thinking the worst when you don't really need to. I just try to do normal things and I try to do what my doctor tells me to do and I trust in God." Julious-Tate says.
This is the first time any significant health problem has been linked to the trait itself.