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Sickle cell disease by Lloyd - video podcast

Sickle cell disease is a painful condition that affects more than 6,000 adults and children in the UK. In his video Lloyd explains how it affects his body and talks about coming to Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) for treatment.

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"I have an illness called sickle cell. This means that my red blood cells are a different shape to everyone else's. Mine are sickle shaped, whereas normal blood cells are round.

Less oxygen

"The shape of my cells makes it difficult for the blood to go around my body.

"And this means that the blood, which carries oxygen around the body, travels more slowly and therefore less oxygen gets to where it's needed.

Get tired

"Sometimes the sickle cells can cause pain in my joints. If I get too cold then parts of my body will start to hurt, so it's important I keep warm.

"And if I am running about I will get tired easier.

Boring!

"One day a month I have to go into GOSH's sickle cell unit and have a blood transfusion.

"I have one to two pints of blood which can take three to four hours.

"It can get boring while I'm having the blood transfusion. I'll try and watch some TV, play computer games or watch a video.

Helps me

"The main thing I don't like is the time it takes to have the transfusion. I could be doing something else instead.

"But I know it's something I have to have, so it's hard to say I don't like being in hospital because I know the transfusion helps me.

Not an excuse

"The day after my transfusion I feel energised and I usually go to the park with my friends and play some football.

"I won't let it stop me, I won't use it as an excuse.

"I just try and go on as normal as I can."

Courtesy of BBC Newsround

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