However, there are other sickle cell anaemia screening tests unavailable to test sickle cell anaemia in the small laboratory at the Mbetta Health Center. The tests require high cost, a lot of time, and they are by the high temperature and humidity.
On the first day in Cameroon at Mbetta Village, the nursing staff referred to me a case of a boy aged 4 years. The boy was clearly unwell. he presented fever, headache, fatigue, pain in the arms and legs. On physical examination by a nurse, the boy`s blood pressure was in a normal range and he had no palpable lymph node. However, the higher left hand abdominal quadrant palpation, auscultation, and percussion signified an enlarged spleen. The nurse noted the boy`s mucus to be pale in colour on examination and the sclera portrayed some elements of Icterus. With no any other abnormal physical signs observed from the boy, the nurse took a venous blood sample and put it into anticoagulant to assist in carrying out a laboratory investigation of the disease.
Sickle cell anaemia affects bones, lungs, abdomen, joints, limbs, and lungs (Ohene-Frempong 2006). For instance, pain, swelling, and fever occur when sickle cells block limb veins (Center for children with Special Needs 2006). When spleen traps many red blood cells a mechanism meant to trap the abnormal red blood cells, it enlarges (Maakaron, E. J. n.d.). Lastly, life-threatening cases of sickle cell anaemia occur when red blood cells are trapped in the lung vein to cause Acute Chest Syndrome, which may damage vein in the lungs. It is detected through abnormal breathing and normal blood pressure (Ohene-Frempong 2006).
The laboratory in Mbetta village is small and equipped as a basic haematology laboratory. It contains microscope, slides, cover slips, and various stains like Romanowsky stain and immersion oil. It is also equipped with haematocrit centrifuge, glass capillaries, an electrophoresis tank, and a power pack.