Why are children with sickle cell disease smaller or less physically developed than other children?

Children with sickle cell disease have red blood cells that do not carry oxygen as well as children with normal red blood cells. In order for any child’s body to grow and develop, oxygen is needed throughout the body for energy. A child with sickle cell disease will grow and develop at a slower pace because less oxygen is being delivered throughout his or her body by the red blood cells.

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