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Background and Objective: Inflammatory markers that influence bone pain crisis (BPC) and other complications of sickle cell anaemia (SCA) are numerous and play various roles. This study determined the plasma levels of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) - α, interleukin - 8 (IL-8), and endothelin - 1 (ET-1) in adult SCA patients during BPC and in steady state. In addition, the plasma levels of these cytokines were correlated with the severity of BPC of the patients.
Methods and Materials: Sixty adult SCA patients (30 during BPC and 30 during steady state) and 30 haemoglobin A controls were enrolled for this cross-sectional study. The severity of BPC was assessed clinically, and questionnaires were filled. Plasma levels of TNF- α, IL-8 and ET-1 were quantified by ELISA, and haematological parameters were determined using a 5-part auto-analyzer. Plasma levels were correlated with the severity of bone pain crisis. Results were considered statistically significant if p<0.05.
Results: Plasma TNF-α, IL-8, and ET-1 were significantly elevated in the BPC group than in the steady state group and the controls. Plasma TNF-α, IL-8 and ET-1 were markedly higher in the severe BPC groups than the steady state and control groups, There was a positive correlation between TNF-α and ET-1 in the bone pain crisis group.
Conclusion: Elevated levels of plasma TNF-α, IL-8, and ET-1 further establish the chronic inflammatory state in SCA and equally affirm their significant contribution, not only to pathogenesis but also to the severity of pain in SCA.
Keywords: Sickle cell anaemia, Cytokines, Bone pain crisis, Severity, Steady state.
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