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Central Standard

Growing up with Sickle Cell


The experience of growing up from a child to an adult includes awkward experiences with friends, family and one's own body add to that the challenge of living with a chronic disease. Brian Ellison speaks with one teenage girl who is growing up with Sickle Cell Anemia.

Bree Person is a Bronx teenager named who shares her experience of growing up with Sickle Cell. Her story was recorded and shared through the Radio Rookies program out of New York Public Radio. She joins Brian on the phone to discuss the disease with Donna McCurry, Sickle Cell Program Manager at Truman Medical Center.

Sickle Cell Anemia is a disease that affects how oxygen passes through the bloodstream. Those affected have a much shorter life span, and experience chronic pain and fatigue. In the United States, most people living with the disease are African-American, and 100,000 African-Americans are currently affected and 1 in 500 African-Americans are born with Sickle Cell each year.

In addition to sharing the statistics about Sickle Cell Anemia, Bree and Donna share their personal experiences of living with the disease or working with those suffering from it.

Central Standard
As a host and contributor at KCUR, I seek to create a more informed citizenry and richer community. I want to enlighten and inspire our audience by delivering the information they need with accuracy and urgency, clarifying what’s complicated and teasing out the complexities of what seems simple. I work to craft conversations that reveal realities in our midst and model civil discourse in a divided world. Follow me on Twitter @ptsbrian or email me at brian@kcur.org.
Matthew Long-Middleton has been a talk-show producer, community producer, Media Training Manager and now the Community Engagement Manager at KCUR. You can reach him at Matthew@kcur.org, or on Twitter @MLMIndustries.