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Disseminated Infections in Functional Versus Anatomical Asplenia

Junaid Arshad, MD, Sina Raissi, MD, FACP, FASN

April 15, 2016

A 33 year-old African American female with past medical history of sickle cell disease presented with recurrent sickle cell vaso-occlusive crises and right lower extremity numbness.  Computed tomography (CT) imaging of the spine done to evaluate for compression incidentally revealed severe splenic calcification, consistent with auto-splenectomy that is commonly observed in sickle cell patients (Figures 1 and 2). 


Figure 1



Figure 2

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1. Rubin, Lorry G., MD, and William Schaffner, MD. "Care of the Asplenic Patient." New England Journal Of Medicine 371 (2014): 349-56. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.
2. Lutwick LI. Infections in asplenic patients. In: Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R, eds. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's principles and practice of infectious diseases. 7th ed. Philadelphia: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2010:3865-73.

About the Authors:
1. Junaid Arshad, MD
Resident  Physician, St. Mary’s Hospital Waterbury , CT

2. Sina Raissi, MD, FACP, FASN
Attending Internal Medicine, Nephrology, St. Mary’s Hospital Waterbury, CT