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Hydroxyurea Does Not Cause Genetic Damage In Children With Sickle Cell Anemia

Posted Dec 12 2011 8:58pm

Young infants and toddlers with sickle cell anemia who received the drug hydroxyurea were no more likely to have cellular genetic damage than those who received a placebo or inactive medicine, said researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., yesterday at the American Society of Hematology’s annual meeting in San Diego, Calif.

These findings provide further evidence of the safety of hydroxyurea for children with sickle cell anemia, said the study’s lead author Dr. Patrick T. McGann, a clinical fellow of pediatric hematology and oncology at BCM and the Texas Children’s Hematology Center. There is some concern that hydroxyurea therapy would lead to genetic damage at the cellular level and could increase the risk of developing cancer.

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