Bone marrow transplantation
Bone marrow is composed of spongy substance wherein the blood cells are formed. Red blood cells at an early stage of development in the bone marrow are called stem cells. These young cells continue to develop from immature cells into full-fledged blood cells.
The bone marrow develop three types of cells:
– Red blood cells (RBCs) that are responsible for transporting oxygen to all the cells of the body;
– White blood cells, infection fighters;
– Platelets that help prevent blood clotting and bleeding.
Transplantation (transplantation of stem cells or bone marrow) increases the patient’s chances of recovery.
There are two types of cell transplantation: stem cells from the patient or donor.
Transplantation of stem cells or bone marrow from donor. This type of stem cell therapy, or bone marrow cells is called an allogeneic transplant or implant of a foreign power. The donor stem cell transplantation is performed to treat bone marrow cancer (leukemia and multiple myeloma) as well as some forms of multiple sclerosis. The purpose of the transplant is to run a healthy donor graft mechanism against disease. These cells are a source of healthy bone marrow.
The best donors are usually a brother or sister of the patient. To determine whether the bone marrow stem cells match the blood is analyzed. The parents and half brothers often do not coincide. In some cases, a donor can be a person who is not a relative, and his white blood cells represent cells of the patient.
When a patient receives a stem cell or bone marrow from the donor, the cells can attack cancer cells, can occur in parallel but counter-reaction. Allogeneic transplantation is a complicated process. This intensive treatment is carried out in public hospitals in Israel, specialized Hematology departments.
If to get a bone marrow from relatives is not possible, the doctor may be associated with the blood bank to check the list of volunteer donors. However, it should be borne in mind that the search for a donor may take some time, since the compatibility should be very accurate.
The vast majority of stem cell transplantation of peripheral blood is donated blood. Before collecting the cells, the donor is administered a short series of injections of growth hormone (GCSF). This hormone stimulates the creation of stem cells released from the bone marrow into the blood.
After four days of injection therapy, the stem cells are collected from the vein of the donor. On average, it takes about 3 to 4 hours. In some cases, when there is a sufficient number of cells, the donor may be asked to return to the hospital for a routine visit. This procedure is similar to a regular blood donation does not require general anesthesia and blood transfusion.
Transplantation of stem cells or bone marrow from the patient. This process is called autologous or autologous transplant. This treatment is used for diseases such as lymphoma, leukemia, myeloma, testicular cancer, multiple sclerosis, and many others.
Stem cells or bone marrow cells are collected and stored in frozen form.
Before treatment, doctor explains to the patient transplant procedure and its possible results and consequences, as well as provides a consent form for treatment.
Before you sign the form, you must make sure you get an information on the following:
1. The proposed type of treatment and the amount.
2. Advantages and disadvantages of the treatment.
3. Possible alternative treatments.
4. Risks or significant adverse effects.
It is important that the patient understands the consequences of treatment.
Preparation and stem sells transplant stages
The treatment period can be very stressful for the patient and his family. Some patients feel more comfortable when they talk about their fears and problems with relatives, some people prefer to talk only to the medical staff. Each patient chooses the most convenient way.
Risks and side effects of a bone marrow transplant
Transplantation of stem cells or bone marrow is a complex and unique treatments that can cause many side effects. The main risks associated with the transplantation of stem cells or bone marrow, occur during the healing of the bone marrow, such as bleeding or infection that could endanger the patient’s life.