I was fortunate to have been diagnosed with symptomatic sick cell trait at the age of 16. I have had exceeding severe yet infrequent crises all my life. However, there were symptoms SCD patients with the full blown disease HB SS have that I never had or only had once or twice. My hematologist said that SCD patients tend to have more severe symptoms with age. I am now 51. He imagines the same might be true for trait patients like myself.
Acute Chest pain only started about 7 years ago. Now a new symptom has occurred. At first it seemed unrelated and not aggravated by my sickle cell trait. I have Acute Iritis. I have had it four weeks. No connection to the trait occurred to me until after my ophthalmologist ran blood test that all returned negative except for an elevated ESR (a general indicator of inflammation). She asked me if I had any signs of arthritis or other inflammatory disease. That is when I told her about sickle cell trait symptoms, while I was not in crisis or experiencing any severe symptoms, I was having moderate inflammation particularly in my hips. It has been four weeks so far. My right eye was minor and has healed. However, my left eye remains severely sensitive to light. Two weeks ago I went to the ER with a sharp stabbing pain through the center of my left eye.
I am wondering if any of you SCT (sickle cell trait) or SCD (sickle cell disease) patients have experienced Iritis, which you believe was attributable to sickle cell. If so, would you be kind enough to share your story. If the disease progressed to blindness, how long did it take? If the problem resolved on its own or with medical intervention, how long did that take? How did they treat you? In a week, I will get a second opinion from a different ophthalmologist who specializes in Iritis/Uveitis. I admit to being a little frightened. Lastly, I have not decided whether or not, I will mention to the new doctor that I experience symptoms due to sickling red cells. I hate to be labeled a faker or ignorant when in contact with a new doctor. I usually wait until all their test come back negative then I tell them about my worse crises. However, time might be of the essence. We are talking about my eyes. What do you think?