Miguel Abboud

Miguel R. Abboud, MD

Professor and Chairman, Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon

Dr Miguel Abboud is the past and founding Medical Director and Professor of Pediatrics at the Children’s Cancer Center of Lebanon, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon (AUBMC). Dr Abboud is also the head of the Sickle Cell Program in the division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at AUBMC

Born in 1956, Dr Abboud obtained a BS with Distinction from the American University of Beirut in 1978, followed by a medical degree from the same institution in 1982. Dr Abboud then undertook a series of fellowships in pediatrics at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and The New York Hospital, Cornell University Medical Center, New York, USA, from 1984 to 1989, before holding a number of positions at the Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, USA.

Dr Abboud has won several awards and honors, including: Teacher of the Year Award for the Department of Pediatrics (2005–2006); the Miracle Maker Award from A.H. Robbins (1995); and the Mitchell Rubin Research Award in Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina (1993). Dr Abboud is a member or fellow of a number of international societies and associations, and is a peer-reviewer for major international journals and is a member of the Editorial Board of Transplantation. Dr Abboud was a member of the Executive Committee and Steering Committee of the Stroke Prevention Study in Sickle Cell Disease, the Steering Committee of the BABYHUG Clinical Trial, and the Executive Committee of STOP II.

Dr Abboud is a member of the American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. He has authored or co-authored over 100 research publications.  His research focuses clinical problems in sickle cell disease and as well as the economic aspects of care for children with cancer and blood disorders.

Abstract: The many faces of sickle cell disease

Sickle cell disease (SCD) is the most common monogenetic disorder worldwide, with incidence even higher among families from tropical and subtropical regions where malaria is, or was, common. A mutation in the β-haemoglobin (Hb) gene results in a mutant form of haemoglobin known as sickle haemoglobin (HbS). Under low oxygen conditions, this mutation promotes polymerization (aggregation) of the HbS, which distorts red blood cells into a sickle shape and decreases their elasticity, thus increasing their rate of haemolysis. Different faces of pathophysiology include the  combination of haemolytic anaemia and vaso-occlusive disease (caused by excessive adhesion of rigid and deformed RBCs to the activated vascular endothelium in low-shear areas such as post-capillary venules) that leads to complications in SCD patients, such as painful episodes and the elevated risk of stroke.  Despite this common and seemingly simple pathophysiology the clinical manifestations of the disease are varied within population groups and even in the same family

A better understanding of the pathophysiology of SCD, and the increasing number of clinical trials conducted during the past decade have resulted in improved prognosis for these patients The presentation will focus on several of  clinical trials, to discuss the evidence base for the many faceted  current comprehensive approach to the management of patients with SCD that includes, simple but effective measures such as immunizations and penicillin, transfusion,  hydroxyurea  as well as complex procedures such as bone marrow transplantation. The many faces of sickle cell disease in different geographic locations will also be discussed comparing approaches in developed countries in contrast to countries with limited resources.

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