Teen cured of sickle cell anemia

By Diane Walker - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Nile is cured of sickle cell anemia, one month after his bone marrow transplant. It's great news for a 13 year old, who's just living to play football and for VCU Medical Center.

Nile will always remember, his doctor's words, in that emotional phone call, telling them the great news:

"I have no more sickled cells. I was excited, speechless because it came so fast," said Nile Price.

We went along with Nile today, to the Nelson Clinic for his checkup. His chubby cheeks are a side effect of medications. His winning smile and resilient spirit are attributes of all of you, who helped Nile. Five months ago, when the 13 year old was so afraid he wouldn't, get a chance at a pain free life.

People near and far got tested after seeing Nile's plea for a bone marrow donor. We helped find two perfect matches. One day, he hopes to meet his lifesaver.

"Tell them how grateful I am and thankful for them donating their blood to me and how they changed my life. That's somebody I would love to keep in contact with," Nile said.

Five Richmond area children, with sickle cell, have had a bone marrow transplant over the past 4 years at VCU Medical Center. Three are cured.

"We are very, very careful and diligent about any complaint that he has and things that may be casual for another child for him may be a sign of something major," said Dr. Kamar Godder, Nile's doctor.

Nile's re-admission to the hospital a couple days ago, because of breathing problems is blamed on a food allergy. Nile writes about it on his blog and our visit too. Doctors believe, Nile's donor is allergic to peanuts and it may have been passed on to Nile. A small inconvenience, his mom says, for a family still in the clouds.

"That's the way we celebrated as though it was Christmas and you got the ultimate gift for Christmas," said Deborah Price, Nile's mother.

To see him go out and walk 2 maybe 3 miles a day and come back in with no pain. That's awesome.

Nile is still encouraging minorities to become donors. More donors of the same race and ethnicity are needed for Asian, Hispanic, Indian and African American patients.

Check out his webpage. He loves all the new friends he's made.

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