Blood Transfusions Crucial for Boy with Sickle Cell Disease, but He Needs Marrow Transplant

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ROCKLIN--

Pierce Salami was diagnosed with sickle cell disease when he was just three weeks old.

He started getting monthly blood transfusions before his first birthday and, 10 years later, they haven't stopped.

"Now he's on what's called Apheresis where he actually uses five units of blood each month in order to bring his iron levels down," Pierce's mom, Tammy, told FOX40.

The constant trips to the hospital can take their toll on Pierce. Sometimes, the pain is too much.

"As a parent, you know, sometimes you wish you can just take their place and go through it for them," dad Landry said.

Forty-eight times in the hospital. Five surgeries. A stroke and a collapsed lung. Pierce has been through a lot at just 10 years old, but his spirits are good. He loves to play cards with his brother, loves to play video games and football.

And his fight isn't over.

"They do have a cure for sickle cell and it's a bone marrow transplant," Tammy said.

Now, the Salamis are desperate for a match.

"The same way that we need people to donate blood, we need marrow donors as well," Tammy said. "Both are much needed and very important in the recovery and healing of these children."

You can join the "Be The Match" national bone marrow registry to help patients like Pierce and Eden at the FOX40 Summer Blood Drive on Friday, August 14, at the IKEA in West Sacramento.

For Pierce, it's another chance to go after his hopes and dreams. One of them is to meet the president. Thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, he's now third on the list.

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