What is the outlook for people with sickle cell disease?

People who have sickle cell disease have a reduced life expectancy. Some people with the disease can remain without symptoms for years, while others do not survive beyond infancy or early childhood. New treatments for sickle cell disease are improving life expectancy and quality of life. People with sickle cell disease can survive beyond their 50s with optimal management of the disease.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 10/24/2016.


  • National Library of Medicine. Genetics Home Reference. Sickle Cell Disease. Accessed 11/10/2016.
  • National Marrow Donor Program. Sickle Cell Disease Accessed 11/10/2016
  • Williams-Johnson J, Williams E. Sickle Cell Disease and Hereditary Hemolytic Anemias. In: Tintinalli JE, Stapczynski J, Ma O, Yealy DM, Meckler GD, Cline DM. eds. Tintinalli’s Emergency Medicine: A Comprehensive Study Guide, 8e. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 2016. accessmedicine.mhmedical.com Accessed 11/10/ 2016.

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy