C.For everything and what Carthage was the most important black port of New Granada's veterinary health authorities did not try to make visible, much less confrontation with the right tools, a disease called "sickle cell anemia".
This is the state of the red blood cells, which reached the American continent by abducting African peoples during the La Colonia period, suggesting that more than 70% of the population in Cartagena is not only the carrier but also must develop in many organisms without the patient doubting what it is.
These considerations are very clear to architect Carlos Carvalho Herrera, founder and director of the Sichemia Foundation, which operates the Jardines de Junio.
Thanks to the baggage managed by its members, the Foundation offers guidance to the families of people suffering from it and cooperates with the supply of medicines because it is a controlled disease, sometimes; and tortured and deadly at other levels of the condition.
Carvalho Herrera carries the characteristics of the disease and it was from this point of view when he discovered that Cartagena had not come to terms when it was in serious danger of having a large number of patients irrigated throughout the city and your corrections.
The same is true of the rest of the Bolivar department.
– How was this Foundation born?
– He was born five years ago, because I have a daughter who suffers from this condition in a serious way. In 2013, she suffered a crisis that sustained her 48 days in the intensive care unit (ICU) and on the verge of death. His lungs, kidneys, liver were affected and he retained fluid. It made me think that something must be done for our youth and children.
– At that time there was a subject focused on working on that evil?
– Nothing. He did, but from a medical point of view, Casa del Nino; and then the Blas de Lecco clinic. But we are moving away from the medical, as we wait for sectors of our city where the disease is more likely to manifest itself, as it is about an Afro-descendant population.
– What is the exact name of the disease and what does it consist of?
– Called "Cell Syndrome Anemia", "Deranotic Anemia", "Syndrome Anemia Anemia", "Sykhemia" or "Depranocytosis". Not contagious, but hereditary. People suffering from the disease have incomplete red blood cells, which causes the bloodstream to not irrigate the organs 100 percent. When this phenomenon occurs, the person begins to experience pain crises in any part of the body for several hours or days. Its symptoms are: pale skin, lips and nails; fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, weakness, irritability, attention deficit disorder and tachycardia. The worsening of the disease can endanger different organs and cause death. It is suitable for the person who suffers from living in a warm climate and the cold is bad for them.
– How is it discovered?
– Through an exam called "Electrophoresis" or "Symptomatic test". Next, another test called "Electrophoresis with an expanded peripheral environment" should be performed to determine the percentage of blood affected. Generally, the child is born healthy but manifests itself at the age of 33. Symptoms and repetitive journeys to hospitals begin to appear until examinations show that the child has a disabling and catastrophic condition due to the high costs it incurs. But in addition, it can cause psycho-affective effects at home.
– What does the Foundation do in these cases?
"Our aim is mainly to alert the health authorities of Cartagena that this disease is among us, housed in the bodies of many Cartagena people who are likely to ignore suffering," he said. That alert is based on the fact that most of our citizens are descendants of Africans and live in vulnerable neighborhoods, so they won't have to face a sick person at home. Due to the likely ignorance of the authorities, there have been many cases where the person is experiencing symptoms but the doctors do not practice the treatment because they confuse the disease with other types of conditions; They may even think that it is something temporary and harmless. We guide patients on the nature of the disease, what to do, where to go; and if they have limited resources, we help them with their medicines. We also defend your rights before health care providers and the state.
– What should the authorities do?
– The first thing would be to improve characterization to know how many people are at risk of suffering from the disease, how much they are suffering, what they are in, what conditions they live in, what their family history is, and so on. The next would be to organize prevention and care campaigns, as the person born with the disease is not the other way around. There is a cure for the disease, which is a bone marrow transplant, but it is very traumatic and is not recommended for people who already have several organs affected.
– What precautions should the patient take?
– Something very important is that if you are planning to have children, you should examine your partner to see if he or she also has the properties of the disease. If so, you should be informed that your child is most likely born with traits; or, at worst, carry the serious form of the disease, as happened to my daughter.
– Is the disease inherited only from people of African descent?
– It is inherited by anyone who has had a family history in this regard. Many white or mesisto people, when treated, are always found to have an afro-descendant ancestor who also had traits or developed severe form. That is, if we take a good look at it, in Cartagena we are all at risk for historical and continuing delusion. So far, the Foundation has 250 patients with mild to severe features. And they are not just from Cartagena, because in the rest of Bolívar cases have been discovered and no one has done anything. Deaths reach worrying levels.