question about sickle cell trait

Nurses General Nursing


My son, 21, joined the Marines in July and just finished boot camp. When he came home on leave, he showed me his medical papers, and it stated that he has sickle cell trait. I told him that they made a mistake and must have mixed his results up with someone else. I am caucasian and so is my husband (his father), so how can that be? He called tonight and said the military personnel talked to him again about having sickle cell trait and that is probably why he has the SOB, etc, during excercise. I do know that the times he had his urine tested in the past, it always showed trace hematuria, but no one ever said why (that was before I was a nurse or I would not have accepted no answer!).

I am so confused about this. I read some articles on the internet, but it always talks about it in reference to African-Americans. And no, he is NOT the product of an affair, haha! Has anyone else had any experience with this type of thing? :confused:


60 Posts


they have some additional information regarding sickle cell trait, etc, and have additional links to help you out.


60 Posts

Don't miss this link, from the site listed above:

It talks about some of the ethnic groups that are affected by it...and its not just African Americans (although that's where the disease seems to have its origins).


46 Posts

It is most common in people of African decent, but it also occurs in Puerto Rico, Turkey, India, the Middle East, and the Mediterranean.

renerian, BSN, RN

5,693 Posts

Specializes in MS Home Health.

May want to consider a retest in case a mistake was made.



93 Posts

I Did not know I was a carrier of sickle cell until I was 23, and this only after my sons peddie check up when his blood came back way out of wack,, I live in a small town, noone checked him when he was born, I am not african American, lucky for me my new ped. md was of hispanic descent and checked us both turns out My son has sickle cell(he is half black) and my daughter is a trait carrier, we never knew that my mother(who in native American) was a carrier, this could explain alot.I had a crash course in learning to do. Educate yourself, and get genitic counsling.

Wow, good question. I'll briefly tell you my story. I joined the Navy when I was 19 and found out in boot camp that I have sickle cell trait......both of my parents are African American. I vaguely remember the doc telling me to not go up in high altitudes and I was supposed to wear special dog tags but for some reason was not issued any.

Anyway, unfortunately I haven't done enough reading on just the trait. But when I think back about being in the Navy I always got sea sick, air sick, and even sick on a submarine. I really dont know if all that had anything to do with sickle cell trait but I always wondered, especially when I got airsick. I'm pretty healthy and since I just have the trait, I don't suffer like someone who has sickle cell disease. The only concern I have about having sickle cell trait is when it comes to marriage because more than likley I will marry and have kids with an African American. I hope you find answers to you questions.


37 Posts

Thanks for all your responses. I will keep on researching, and my husband just suggested that we both go for blood tests as well. We won't be having any more kids (we are grandparents now) but I guess it would be good for my other kids to know. I was glad to hear from Texaswag that he went through the Navy okay even with the trait - I have been worrying a bit about my son, although I guess if he made it through Marine boot camp, he can make it through anything! Ha!

You'e welcome. Oh, by the way I'm a woman.

Texas WAG(Woman AGgie)


712 Posts

If I am not mistaken if both parents have the trait then it is more likely the child may have sickle cell. So in doubt check it out whether you are black or white decent .


37 Posts

:rolleyes: My sincere apologies, TexasWAG, lol! And I should have known better than to say "he." When we went to my son's graduation at Parris Island, my mother a few times asked some little kids, "Is your brother is the Marines?" or "...your dad?" and every time the answer was, "No, my aunt" or "No, my sister" - hahaha! Times have changed. I didn't realize how old I've become. :wink2: problem. I laughed myself. Keep us informed about your son. Marines are the coolest!

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