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1.  Surgical and Obstetric Outcomes in Adults with Sickle Cell Disease 
The American journal of medicine  2008;121(10):916-921.
Sickle cell disease patients are more likely than the general population to undergo surgery and usually do so at a younger age. Female sickle cell disease patients also have special gynecological and obstetric issues related to their disease.
We collected data through standardized clinical report forms, patient interviews, and medical records from 509 adult sickle cell disease patients. Logistic regression was used to estimate the association between multiple variables and each of the surgery types. We also determined the prevalence and outcomes of pregnancy in 284 women with sickle cell disease in this population.
Almost 50% of patients aged 18–27 years had had a cholecystectomy. Mean corpuscular hemoglobin, total bilirubin, and lactate dehydrogenase were significantly higher in the postcholecystectomy group; 9.5% of 504 individuals had undergone splenectomy. Hematocrit, body mass index, and red blood cell count were significantly higher in the postsplenectomy group. Hip replacement had been performed in 9.2% of individuals, with the prevalence increasing as early as the fourth decade and continuing to increase through the sixth decade of life. A history of pregnancy was present in 190 women (67%). Of 410 pregnancies, only 53.9% resulted in live births, 16.6% were voluntarily terminated, and 29.5% were complicated by miscarriage, still birth, or ectopic implantation.
Sickle cell disease continues to have a strong effect on the mean age for common surgeries and impacts pregnancy outcomes. We conclude that this population has a unique surgical and obstetric history that should be further studied to provide insight into potentially more effective preventive approaches to end-organ damage.
PMCID: PMC3928637  PMID: 18823864
Cholecystectomy; Pregnancy; Pregnancy complications; Sickle cell disease; Surgery
2.  Genes implicated in serotonergic and dopaminergic functioning predict BMI categories 
Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.)  2008;16(2):348-355.
This study addressed the hypothesis that variation in genes associated with dopamine function (SLC6A3, DRD2, DRD4), serotonin function (SLC6A4), and regulation of monoamine levels (MAOA) may be predictive of BMI categories (obese and overweight + obese) in young adulthood and of changes in BMI as adolescents transition into young adulthood. Interactions with gender and race/ethnicity were also examined.
Research Methods and Procedures
Participants were a subsample of individuals from The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), a nationally representative sample of adolescents followed from 1995 to 2002. The sample analyzed included a subset of 1584 unrelated individuals with genotype data. Multiple logistic regressions were conducted to evaluate associations between genotypes and obesity (BMI > 29.9) or overweight + obese combined (BMI > 25) with normal weight (BMI = 18.5–24.9) as a referent. Linear regression models were used examine change in BMI from adolescence to young adulthood.
Significant associations were found between SLC6A4 5HTTLPR and categories of BMI, and between MAOA promoter VNTR among males and categories of BMI. Stratified analyses revealed that the association between these two genes and excess BMI was significant for males overall, and for White and Hispanic males specifically. Linear regression models indicated a significant effect of SLC6A4 5HTTLPR on change in BMI from adolescence to young adulthood.
Our findings lend further support to the involvement of genes implicated in dopamine and serotonin regulation on energy balance.
PMCID: PMC2919156  PMID: 18239643
Adolescents; Genetic Epidemiology; Serotonin; Neuro Transmitter

Results 1-2 (2)