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Sickle Cell Disease and Pregnancy Outcomes 
Georgina Boateng (DO ‘25)


March 24, 2022

Georgina Boateng (DO ‘25) graduated from East Carolina University in 2018, majoring in biology with a minor in neuroscience.

PCOM South Georgia medical student Georgina Boateng (DO ‘25) What do you study?

My research focuses on the impact of sickle cell disease (SCD) on pregnancy outcomes. Evidence has shown that SCD can have a negative impact on both the mother and unborn fetus during pregnancy. Pregnant women with SCD appear to be more likely to experience complications when compared to those without SCD. These complications can include anemia in mothers, premature birth, urinary infection, prenatal demise/stillborn and increased frequency of pain crisis. My research examines the degree of impact of SCD on maternal morbidity and pregnancy outcomes.

What prompted you to pursue research?

My interest in research was motivated by being a sickle cell patient myself. I wanted to learn more about it and use that knowledge to help others like me improve their quality of life. As I did that, I became interested in other areas of research, all in hopes of one day using that information to improve the quality of life for other individuals.

What experience do you have conducting research?

During undergraduate studies and following graduation, I researched Human T-cell Leukemia Virus Type 1 for two years. I then participated in another research for four more years, serving as a stakeholder for the National Institute of Health Research, Sickle Cell Disease Implementation Consortium. Now, I am a researcher for the NIH All of Us research program. I will be presenting on the impact SCD has on pregnancy at an upcoming conference.

What are your responsibilities in this research project?

This is an independent research project, so I am responsible for all aspects of the project. My responsibilities include putting together my data for the research and analyzing the data; writing the different sections (eg: abstract, introduction, results and conclusion) of the research so I can put them on my poster; meeting with my PI to discuss my research paper and making sure that my data supports that. I also have check-in meetings on Sundays to meet with the NIH All of Us staff.

What is the broader impact of your research? How does your research affect healthcare/health professions?

My research will be examining if SCD has a negative impact on pregnancy. This question is important to me because as a female and a sickle cell patient myself, I believe it is very important to know the dangers that come with having sickle cell. Not only will this research benefit me, but it further increases physician awareness, leading to better healthcare plans for SCD expecting mothers. I hope to raise awareness of this issue at hand. With the results that I will attain for this research, I hope to shine a light on how to combat maternal mortality for sickle cell patients.

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  • About PCOM South Georgia

    Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) extended its commitment to the Southeast by establishing PCOM South Georgia, an additional teaching location in Moultrie, Georgia. PCOM South Georgia offers both a full, four-year medical program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree and a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences degree. PCOM is a private, not-for-profit institution which trains professionals in the health and behavioral sciences fields. Joining PCOM Georgia in Suwanee in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state, PCOM South Georgia focuses on educating physicians for the South Georgia region. The medical campus, which welcomed its inaugural class of medical students in August 2019, has received accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association's Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation. For more information, visit pcom.edu/southgeorgia or call 229-668-3110.

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    Email: jordanro1@pcom.edu
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