If the bone marrow gets destroyed or damaged due to any infection, disease or because of chemotherapy, then using transplantation technique, the damaged or weakened cells are replaced with healthy cells. This means, the healthy bone marrow tends to replace those unhealthy ones. It is rather termed to be a medical procedure, where blood stem cells are said to move towards the marrow. This in turn helps to generate new blood cells, thus promoting development of new marrow.
About bone marrow
It rather appears spongy. A fatty tissue is present within the bone to create following blood parts:
- RBC (Red blood cells), which carries nutrients and oxygen throughout the body.
- WBCs (White Blood cells) to fight infection
- Platelets that is responsible towards forming blood clots
These assist in creating sufficient amount of platelets, RBCs or WBCs, to help prevent anemia, bleeding disorders and infections. The cost of a bone marrow transplant has come down dramatically in the last few years.
Types of bone marrow transplant
It is into two ways that they are categorized into, namely:
- Allogeneic BMT
- Autologous BMT
Steps involved in transplantation
- The first step involves planning in advance. Plans and personal issues are to be managed simultaneously. This way, the recovery can be given full attention to.
- The next step involves preparation. For better development, the donor is to be prepared for transplant, be it anyone.
- The third step is conditioning. As the donor and the patient are regarded for undergoing the transplantation procedure, the physician will start the conditioning regimen. The patient here will receive total body irradiation, chemotherapy, so as to destroy unhealthy marrow and cancer.
- The fourth step is transplantation, which will take place after conditioning of the patient is fully completed.
- The fifth step involves waiting for engraftment. It is termed to be a process, where the donor received stem cells starts to develop and grow. It means, the bone marrow and immune system have been recovering. The patient in this case, will be monitored closely and any complications or side effect, if emerges, is take adequate care of. Emotional support will also be provided by the transplantation team.
- The sixth step is recovering after engraftment. The initial recovery period may take around 3 months. It is just one monthly only for autologous. The patient is kept under strict observation, while there will be scheduled regular blood tests.
- The seventh step involves long term recovery. After allogeneic transplantation, there is likely to be extended recovery period. Hospital staff has to be met for long term follow up program. The patient will also be offered with precious life-long resources that are related to the operation. The professionals will work along with the patient’s team to offer discharge evaluation. In case, autologous transplantation has taken place, then no long term issues would be present.
The fact is bone marrow transplant cost in India has reduced immensely, thus making this country a medical hub thus, compelling patients from all over the world to come over for their treatment.