Chances are that you have heard about people who have recurring relapses of leukemia or blood cancer being treated with a bone marrow transplant, but it’s not very well known that other forms of cancer are often treated by a bone marrow transplant.
Some of the other cancers which are treated with a bone marrow transplant are:
- Breast Cancer
- Ovarian Germ Cell Tumors
- Testicular Cancer
- Non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Hodgkin Lymphoma [Hodgkin Lymphoma signs]
Although most people think of a bone marrow transplant as something that is used to treat cancer, transplanting bone marrow from one person to another has been found to be useful in treating other diseases as well.
Diseases treated with bone marrow transplant
Here are some of the diseases and conditions that doctors treat with a bone marrow transplant.
- Isolated plasmacytoma of the bone
- Extramedullary plasmacytoma
- Fanconi anemia
- Pure red cell aplasia
- Congenital thrombocytopenia
- Multiple myeloma
If a doctor has determined that you need to have a bone marrow transplant, the first thing that will need to be done is to find a good match for you.
When there is a good match, there is a less chance of having a rejection once you have received the transplant.
A brother or sister is going to be the best match, especially if you have a twin. After your family is tested, your doctor may also put you into a database to find a match if no one in your family is able to be your donor.
Preparing for bone marrow transplant
A person who is scheduled to have a bone marrow transplant will be started on a course of anti rejection drugs. These drugs are going to help make sure that their body will not reject the new bone marrow.
Most patients are awake during a bone marrow transplant and the bag of bone marrow will be hung on an IV pole and be given to you intravenously.
You will be monitored during the procedure and your vital signs will be taken to make sure that you are not rejecting the bone marrow.
A bone marrow transplant is not without its risks, but sometimes it’s the best course of action for people who are suffering from serious illnesses. It’s very often the best chance that people can have for a normal life and to help them fight the illness that is in their bodies.
If you are scheduled to have a bone marrow transplant, make sure that you ask your doctor any questions that you have. That is what they are there for.