Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a chronic, genetic blood disorder which causes painful attacks (sickle cell crises) that can be difficult for patients to manage. Patients with SCD over their lifetime can have problems which affect practically every part of the body. SCD changes normal, round red blood cells into ones shaped like crescent or half-moons. Normally, healthy red blood cells carry oxygen through the body. However, people with SCD do not have enough normal cells to carry the right amount of oxygen. This causes the sickled cells to get stuck and block blood vessels, which stops the oxygen from getting through the body and causes a lot of pain. When there is a blockage, the hands, feet, abdomen, back, or chest are affected.
Along with pain, symptoms of SCD can include fatigue, shortness of breath, rapid heart rate, paleness or jaundice, swelling of the hands or feet, and an increased rate of infections. Sometimes, SCD can lead to damage of many organs throughout the body, delayed growth, vision problems, and strokes.
Diagnosis of Sickle Cell Disease
Sickle cell disease can be diagnosed by a blood test. Every state requires that all babies, before they leave the hospital, are tested for SCD as part of their newborn screening.
Treatment of Sickle Cell Disease
Treatment of young patients usually includes antibiotics from 2 months to 5 years of age to help prevent infections. Children and adults should be seen regularly in the outpatient clinic to assess for symptoms, screen for complications of the disease and promote general health and well-being. We recommend appropriate immunizations across the lifespan. Many patients living with SCD experience pain on a daily basis and using the right combination of therapies can help to treat this. Developing a pain management plan with a physician or pain management specialist is encouraged at the center.
Center of Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease
BMC’s Center of Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease is the largest center of its kind in New England, serving more than 450 patients annually, from newborns to adults. The center’s multidisciplinary team is committed to providing patients across their lifespan with highly personalized care to manage their symptoms associated with the disease so they can live as normal a life as possible.
The SCD team includes physicians and a nurse practitioner from pediatric and adult hematology, adult and pediatric primary care, and other specialties as well as nurses, social workers, case management and a patient navigator to help guide patients through their care. The program focuses on providing consistent care between the Emergency Department, inpatient services, and outpatient clinics. The program utilizes the pediatric STAR unit and the Infusion Center in the adult Hematology/Oncology clinic for outpatient transfusions and pain management.
Features of the Center
- Largest combined SCD pediatric and adult population within one center in New England
- Studying how sickle cell disease affects the body and investigating new potential treatments
- Expertise in the transition of care from pediatrics to adulthood
- Expertise in management of the complications of SCD with medical and surgical specialists who treat our patients
- Expertise in pain management
- Continued development of new initiatives to improve patient care
Locations and Hours
BMC Adult SCD Clinic
830 Harrison Avenue, Suite 3200
Boston, MA 02120
Monday to Friday: 8:00a.m. to 4:00p.m.
BMC Pediatric SCD Clinic
Pediatric Specialty Clinics, 5th floor
850 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118
To reach the Pediatric Hematologist on call, phone 617.414.5000 and page #5731.
Monday to Friday: 8:00a.m. to 4:00p.m.
The Ryan Center for Sports Medicine at Boston University offers a range of comprehensive sports medicine services at one convenient location. The multi-disciplinary team of family medicine physicians trained in sports medicine and orthopedic surgeons, along with rehabilitation staff provide patients with advanced diagnostics and treatment for sports injuries. The scope of services include doctor’s appointments, physical therapy, nutrition, athletic training, and a concussion program.
The doctors at the Ryan Center guide patients through the diagnosis and treatment process of their medical issues – acute, chronic musculoskeletal (MSK) issues and medical issues related to sports participation. The Center offers on-site x-rays and ultrasound to help diagnosis a patient’s condition. Once diagnosed, physicians can design a treatment plan that is patient-specific in order to obtain the best results possible.
The Ryan Center is a unique facility in Boston offering a range of services at one location. Learn more about the Ryan Center for Sports Medicine.
The Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Boston Medical Center is a leader in women’s health. Caretakers contribute to the long-term health and well-being of the women served by consistently providing the highest quality medical care to each and every patient.
- Midwifery Service
- Labor & Delivery
- Centering Pregnancy Groups
- Birth Sisters Doula Service
- Childbirth Education
- Gynecology including reproductive endocrinology and infertility, oncology, urogynecology and family planning
- Special programs including pregnancy and addiction medicine, and minimally invasive surgery
BMC’s extraordinary range of support services are available including a full-time medical interpreter staff that provides more than 30 languages on site, 24/7.
Alzheimer's disease care at Boston Medical Center is under the auspices of the Boston University Alzheimer's Disease Center established in 1996. We are one of two Alzheimer’s Disease Centers in Massachusetts and one of 31 Centers nationwide, funded by the National Institute on Aging.
We provide a range of clinical services for patients and families affected by Alzheimer's disease and related memory and neurobehavioral problems. Our expert multidisciplinary team of clinicians includes experienced professionals in the fields of neurology, neuropsychology and nursing. We provide care in both outpatient and inpatient settings located throughout eastern Massachusetts.
Researchers at our Center are working to translate research advances into improved diagnosis and care for Alzheimer's disease patients while, at the same time, focusing on the program’s long-term goal—finding a way to cure and possibly prevent Alzheimer's disease.
We invite you to visit the official website for the Alzheimer's Disease Center, hosted by Boston University, for additional information.
We are located in Boston Medical Center's beautiful Shapiro Center in Boston’s historic South End.
We are continually working to improve diagnosis and care for Alzheimer's disease patients as well as finding a cure.
Boston Medical Center
Department of Neurology
7th Floor, Suite 7B
725 Albany Street
Boston, MA 02118
Boston University Neurology Associates
1221 Main Street
South Weymouth, MA 02190
Alzheimer's Disease Clinical & Research Program
72 East Concord Street, B-7800
Boston, MA 02118
The Autism Program at BMC is a multi-disciplinary, comprehensive and culturally competent program that is uniquely equipped to meet the complex needs of patients and families.
Our team of Resource Specialists and Family Navigators offers specialized outreach, training, and advocacy services, forms effective partnerships with schools, collaborates with local organizations, and draws upon a deep knowledge base of social service agencies to facilitate linkages to critical resources.
Patients of BMC represent some of the neediest people in the Greater Boston Area; almost 75% receive government-subsidized insurance such as Medicaid, and a significant portion struggle to make ends meet with incomes well below the poverty level. Seventy percent of all patients are from racial and ethnic minority populations, and 30% do not speak English as a primary language.
Boston Medical Center’s Autism Program assists and empowers those affected by ASD through direct patient support, provider education and community based trainings in a culturally competent manner by offering high quality and comprehensive care to all, regardless of status or ability to pay.
Since 2003, clinicians have provided evaluations and ongoing care for children of all ages when there is a pediatrician concern about autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and related conditions. The Autism Program team at BMC is made up of trained professionals who work alongside Developmental and Behavioral clinicians to provide both exceptional medical care without exception and develop innovative, culturally competent approaches and methodologies to best support BMC’s patient population.
The diagnosis of ASD presents a uniquely complex set of challenges for families and the clinicians responsible for their care. There is no identified single cause, no known cure, nor any one prescribed treatment that can predict optimal outcomes for all children. Families affected by ASD confront a variety of barriers to getting needed services for their children. This includes systemic barriers, such as obtaining diagnostic appointments and securing treatment in a resource-limited economy. Many families seen at BMC are low-income, immigrant families who have the additional challenge of facing cultural, linguistic, educational, or other social barriers. To address this challenge, The Autism Program assists and empowers those affected by ASDs through direct patient support, provider education and community based trainings in a culturally competent manner by offering high quality and comprehensive care to all, regardless of status or ability to pay.
Facts and Figures
The Autism Program…
- Has supported over 6,000 family referrals since its inception in 2007
- Conducts annual trainings, workshops, and events for over 150 parents, professionals, and community members
- Has over 1,100 followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest with an average of 10 new parent and professional followers each week
- Curates a robust resource library with over 300 materials translated into multiple languages
- Operates a highly successful culturally and linguistically diverse Parent Leadership Network (PLAN) with over 25 parent mentor matches entering its fourth year
- Runs a unique Teen Mentoring program (TEAM), with 24 participants in its first year
- Hosts an annual Autism Awareness Day event for families, community members, and hospital staff
- Has fostered successful partnerships with over 25 community based agencies and programs
On Saturday, September 24, 2016, our team participated in the Rodman Ride for Kids! The ride may be over, but the fundraising is still active until November 20. To donate to our team page, click here.
The Autism Program at Boston Medical Center
Department of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics
Email: [email protected]
Yawkey Ambulatory Care Center
850 Harrison Avenue, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02118
88 East Newton Street, 4th Floor
Boston, MA 02118
To make an appointment with the Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics department, please call 617.414.4841.
The Nutrition and Weight Management Program is an integral part of the Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes, Nutrition and Weight Management. The Center offers state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment services for nutritional disorders and weight management for people age 18 and older. The Nutrition and Weight Management team includes physicians, a nurse practitioner specializing in nutrition, and clinical dieticians including bariatric diabetes educators. Every patient receives individualized attention and a nutrition and/or weight loss plan that seeks to minimize risk and maximize results.
The Kidney Transplant Program at Boston Medical Center (BMC) is fully committed to providing every patient with exceptional care, without exception. Since our first transplant in 1977, our program has evolved into a high-quality service sought out by local, regional, national and international patients and their families.
Our experienced transplant surgeons are supported by a multidisciplinary clinical team devoted to delivering the best care to patients, donors and their families. The team carefully guides patients and loved ones through the steps of giving and receiving a kidney transplant in a compassionate, understanding and pressure-free environment. Additionally, our strong relationship with local dialysis centers and nephrologists ensures we receive all of the necessary information to provide the best possible outcome.
Why Choose BMC’s Kidney Transplant Program?
- Our accomplished transplant surgeons have performed over 900 kidney transplants, and have a combined 32 years of transplant experience.
- Our living kidney donor program has completed 300 living donor transplants since 1987, and continues to grow every year.
- Our transplant nurse coordinators have a combined 33 years of experience, and expertly guide patients and families through any clinical and social situation.
- BMC’s extensive social services network provides patients and families with the tools and education needed to manage the transplant process, both before and after surgery.
- Our clinical pharmacy team is committed to making sure medications are received promptly and patients understand when and how to take them. Continuing improvement projects have improved patient medication compliance, which has led to safer and more effective care.
- Our financial services team works closely with patients and their families to maximize insurance coverage for transplant and to make sure the financial components of the transplant process are clearly explained and taken care of, every time.
Audiologists at Boston Medical Center provide services to a wide variety of patients, ranging from newborn babies to elderly adults. The team performs a number of diagnostic tests in our state-of-the-art clinic. Testing ranges from basic hearing tests that require the patient to raise their hand in response to sounds to more advanced testing which uses computer generated signals to elicit responses in the brainstem (ABR). We also provide testing for those who are suspected of having auditory processing disorders. Audiologists are also principal providers of diagnostic testing for patients with dizziness and balance problems. Outside of the clinic, you may find audiologists in the operating room performing ABR on those children who are difficult to test or assisting surgeons during intricate surgeries by monitoring the cranial nerves.
In addition to diagnostic testing, providing information and helping patients with strategies for coping with hearing loss, audiologists also fit patients with hearing aids. We offer the latest in digital hearing aid technology and offer a variety of sizes and options. We also fit special earplugs for musicians, dentists or workers who need sound reduction or protection from noise exposure. Water resistant earmolds are also made at our clinic for those who have tubes in their ears or who are prone to swimmer's ear. Finally, we offer consultation on the use of assistive listening devices.
Many teenagers and young adults struggle with addiction to drugs, alcohol, or both. At Boston Medical Center, the CATALYST program helps teens and young adults who are struggling with addiction. Our clinic provides access to a wide range of services including primary care, behavioral health, and support resources for patients up to age 25 and their families.
We are a multidisciplinary team consisting of physician’s (two of which are board certified in addiction medicine) a social worker, nurse, patient navigator and outreach worker, all overseen by a program manager and medical director. Specially trained and adept to working with young patients struggling with substance use, together we strive to provide the best care for patients and their families paving a clear path to recovery.
- Assessment and diagnosis of substance use disorders (SUDs)
- Counseling support
- Treatment of SUDs with medications (such as buprenorphine and naltrexone)
- Monitoring with urine drug testing
- HIV, HCV screening and treatment options
- Overdose education and naloxone access
- Visits for families both of patients who are in treatment and not in treatment
- Access to primary care
- Pregnancy prevention
- Outreach support through patient navigation
In order for our team to provide substance use care, patients must receive primary care Boston Medical Center. The CATALYST Clinic team can help patients schedule and establish primary care at BMC in addition to their substance use care/services.