The Sickle Cell Trait (SCT) is inherited when one sickle cell gene is passed on from one parent. This does not result in the sickle cell disorder and symptoms rarely manifest. Sickle cell trait carriers are prevalent in Malaria-endemic areas. If you are from a risky area and/or have a family history of sickle cell disease, it is advisable to have a blood test to know your sickle cell trait status.

Most Sickle cell trait carriers are healthy, however, medical providers should be informed of this status especially when undertaking certain medical procedures that require anesthetics, for example, general surgery.  Knowing your sickle trait status will help you make informed decisions when planning a family.

  • If one parent has SCT, there is a 50% (or 1 in 2) chance that their child will also have SCT. Such children will not have symptoms of SCD, but they can pass SCT on to their children. This probability is in every pregnancy.
  • If both parents have SCT, there is a 25% (or 1 in 4) chance that their child will have SCD. There is the same 25% (or 1 in 4) chance that any of their child will not have SCD or SCT. This probability is in every pregnancy.
  • If one parent has the sickle cell disease and the other has no sickle cell disease, there is a 50% (or 1 in 2) chance that all pregnancies will result in children being born with SCT. Such children will not have symptoms of SCD, but they can pass SCT on to their children.
  • If one parent has the sickle cell disease and the other has the sickle cell trait, there is a 50% (or 1 in 2) chance that a child will either have sickle cell disease or sickle cell trait for every pregnancy.
  • If both parents have sickle cell disease, then all their children in every pregnancy will have sickle cell disease, 0% chance for children to have the sickle cell trait.