Purpose Frequencies of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from pain related candidate genes are available for individuals with sickle cell disease (SCD). One of those genes, the arginine vasopressin receptor 1A gene (AVPR1A) and one of its SNPs, rs10877969, has been associated with pain and disability in other pain populations. In patients with SCD, clinical factors such as pain and stress have been associated with increased health care utilization, but it is not known if the presence of the AVPR1A SNP plays a role in this observation. The study purpose was to explore the relationships between rs10877969 and self-reported pain, stress, and acute care utilization events among individuals with SCD. Methods In a cross-sectional investigation of outpatients with SCD, participants completed PAINReportIt®, a computerized pain measure, to describe their pain experience and contributed blood or saliva samples for genetic analysis. We extracted emergency department and acute care utilization from medical records. Results The SNP genotype frequencies (%) for this sample were CC 30 (28%), CT 44 (41%), TT 33 (31%). Acute care utilization and stress as an aggravator of pain were significantly associated with the rs10877969 genotype (p = .02 and p = .002, respectively). The CT genotype had the highest mean utilization and CC genotype was associated with not citing stress as a pain aggravator. Chronic pain was not associated with rs10877969 (p = .41). Conclusion This study shows that rs10877969 is related to indicators of stress and acute pain. Further research is recommended with other measures of stress and acute pain.