By Taye Obateru
Jos—Intending couples who are carriers of the sickle cell genotype have been advised to save themselves of a lifetime of headache by not going ahead with the marriage.
According to a university don, Dr. Sylvanus Okpe, ignorance remained the greatest inhibition to the campaign against the disease as many Nigerians do not even know the difference between blood group and genotype.
He spoke, yesterday, at a sickle cell awareness program organised by a non-government organisation, Value 4 Life Initiative, to mark the World Sickle Cell Day.
He regretted that despite spirited campaigns, some intending couples still go ahead with marriage without going for the necessary genotype test to determine their compatibility.
He said: “It is purely ignorance that is leading to the increasing spread of sickle cell anaemia, because the solution is simple.
“If two intending couples are carriers, there is no need to subject themselves to lifelong torture because the likelihood of having one or more of their children with Sickle Cell Anaemia, SCA, is higher.