In society lives many superheroes, superheroes who are not wearing capes or masks but making a real difference in someone’s life. Being a bone marrow donor is one of the most heroic acts anyone can perform and it has the potential to save someone’s life. Bone marrow donation is an easy process where a donor can help patients fighting leukemia, lymphoma, or another health condition.
What is Bone Marrow Donation?
Bone marrow donation is a medical procedure that involves taking healthy blood cells from one person and transferring them into another person’s body. It is done through a process called apheresis, in which the patient’s blood is taken out of their body, filtered to remove the necessary cells, then put back. The donor does not need to undergo any surgery, and the process is relatively painless.
Why Donate Bone Marrow?
The biggest benefit of bone marrow donation is that it can save someone’s life. Without a successful transplant, many patients would not be able to survive their diagnosis. Additionally, donating bone marrow provides donors with a sense of satisfaction from knowing that they have helped to improve someone else’s life.
Why do some people need bone marrow transplants? Some people need bone marrow transplants because they have diseases or conditions that destroy their own stem cells and make it difficult for them to produce healthy blood cells. Some of these diseases include leukemia, lymphoma, and inherited immunodeficiencies. Bone marrow transplants are the only way to replace these missing stem cells and restore a patient’s ability to produce healthy blood cells.
How Does a Bone Marrow Donation Work?
Assuming you pass the initial tests and a match is found, the donation process is relatively straightforward. The donor will receive either general anesthesia
or intravenous sedation and a small amount of bone marrow will be collected through a needle inserted into the hipbone. The donor will be monitored for up to two hours
after the procedure is complete and then given instructions on how to care for themselves after the donation.
Depending on the needs of the recipient, there are two types of bone marrow donation: peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) donation and bone marrow harvest. PBSC donation is a minimally invasive procedure that involves collecting blood from a donor’s arm, then removing and storing the stem cells in a laboratory. Bone marrow harvest is a more invasive procedure that requires the donor to undergo surgery and have marrow removed from their hip bones (as noted previously).
Both kinds of donation provide a potentially lifesaving treatment for those suffering from conditions like leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood disorders. However, it is important to note that the process of bone marrow donation can be physically and emotionally taxing, so it is important
to be well-informed and aware of the risks involved.
How Can You Donate Bone Marrow?
To start, we recommend searching for ‘bone marrow donation centers near me
‘ to find a donation center near you. These centers provide resources on the process and any potential risks associated with it, as well as the necessary steps to be taken to become a donor.
In most cases, potential donors will start by registering with the bone marrow registry. This allows you to sign up for donations and informs potential recipients of your availability. Once a match is found, the actual donation process typically takes place. The recipient must match in terms of blood type and other factors, such as age and tissue compatibility.
Why not become a superhero today?