A bone marrow transplant involves a procedure that injects healthy blood stem cells into the patient’s body to replace the damaged or diseased bone marrow. A bone marrow transplant is also generally known as a stem cell transplant.
The transplant may be necessary if the person’s bone marrow stops working and is not able to produce sufficient healthy blood cells. These transplants may use cells from your own body which is termed as autologous transplantation or a donor that is termed as allogeneic transplantation. Read about what is stem cell therapy and how it helps in curing a wide range of diseases.
A bone marrow transplant may be used for the following.
- To safely allow treatment of the person’s condition with high doses of chemotherapy or radiation by replacing or removing damaged bone marrow by treatment.
- To replace diseased or damaged bone marrow with new stem cells.
- To provide new stem cells that can help indirectly killing cancer cells.
Bone marrow transplants are beneficial for people with different types of both cancerous/malignant and noncancerous/benign diseases, including:
- Acute leukemia
- Aplastic Anemia
- Chronic Leukemia
- Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes
- Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Inborn Errors Of Metabolism
- Immune Deficiencies
- Myelodysplastic Syndromes
- Multiple Myelomas
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- POEMS Syndrome
- Plasma Cell Disorders
- Primary Amyloidosis
Pretransplant Tests And Procedures:
The stem cell treatment centers in USA puts a patient through a series of tests and procedures to assess the general health, the status of their condition, and to ensure that they are physically prepared for the transplant. The evaluation might take several days or even more depending on the condition of the patient.
Also, a surgeon or radiologist will implant a long thin tube called an intravenous catheter into a large vein in the chest or neck. The catheter that is often called a central line usually remains in place for the duration of the treatment. The transplant team will use this central line to infuse the transplanted stem cells, other medications, and blood products into the body.
What To Expect During And After The Transplant Process?
The bone marrow transplant occurs after completion of the conditioning process. On the day of the operation, called zero-day, stem cells are infused into the body through the central line. The transplant infusion process is painless, and the patient is fully awake during it.
The transplanted stem cells make their way to the bone marrow, where they begin creating new blood cells. It can take up to a few weeks for new blood cells to be produced and for the blood counts to start recovering.
After the transplant, the patient remains under close medical care and if they experience infections or other struggles, they might have to stay for longer in the hospital.
What Are The Results Of A Bone Marrow Transplant?
A bone marrow transplant can cure a range of diseases and send others into remission. The main aim of a bone marrow transplant depends on an individual’s situation but usually includes controlling or curing their illness, extending life, and improving the quality of life.
Some people complete bone marrow transplantation with fewer side effects and complications. Others experience several challenging issues, both short and long term. The intensity of side effects and the success of the transplant vary from person to person. Moreover, it can be challenging to predict before the transplant in some cases.
It can be discouraging if major challenges arise during the transplant process. However, it is sometimes helpful to acknowledge that many survivors also experienced more or less similar challenging days during the transplant process but ultimately had successful transplants and have returned to their regular activities with a good quality of life.