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Acute chest syndrome is a lung-related complication of
sickle cell disease that can lower the levels of
oxygen in the blood and can be life-threatening. Repeat occurrences of acute
chest syndrome can cause lung damage. This condition develops more often in
young children but is usually more severe in adults.
Symptoms of acute chest syndrome can include:
Symptoms require emergency evaluation and treatment. Because a person
with acute chest syndrome can deteriorate rapidly, a hospital stay is usually
needed. Some cases are mild and will need little more than careful
observation. More severe cases may need treatment in an intensive care
unit (ICU) of the hospital.
Although its cause is not fully understood, acute chest syndrome is
more likely to develop after:
Treatment of acute chest syndrome includes:
Other Works Consulted
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health (2002). The Management of Sickle Cell Disease (NIH Publication No. 02-2117). Available online: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/prof/blood/sickle/.
Steinberg MH (2016). Sickle cell disease and other hemoglobinopathies. In L Goldman, A Shafer, eds., Goldman-Cecil Medicine, 25th ed., vol. 2, pp. 1095–1104. Philadelphia: Saunders.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal MedicineAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineMartin J. Gabica, MD - Family MedicineKathleen Romito, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerMartin Steinberg, MD - Hematology
Current as ofMarch 9, 2017
Current as of:
March 9, 2017
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
& Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Martin Steinberg, MD - Hematology
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