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AUSTIN, Minn. — It’s a disease that affects thousands of Americans.
And one national organization is looking to raise awareness, while lending a helping hand.
The American Red Cross is seeking blood donations this month as part of National Sickle Cell Awareness month.
An estimated 100,000 Americans deal with the disease, which causes red blood cells to form an abnormal shape.
The only way to help ease their pain is the blood transfusions, which is why the Red Cross is asking for blood donations.
“That is going to make their pain much less,” Freeborn-Mower Red Cross Program Coordinator Chris Avery said. “And so, sometimes it can be done with one transfusion. But, in most cases, it’s done through many transfusions over the course of several minutes at a time.”
The transfusions help reduce the risks of stroke, damage to major organs and other complications.