Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

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Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by Rebecca1340 on Wed Jul 20, 2011 3:27 pm

Hi everyone! Just a post about something that I've. Been giving a lot of thought to in the past 24 hours.
Almost exactly two years ago I registered with OneMatch, a branch of Canadian Blood Services that deals registers potential bone marrow and stem cell donors. The process was really simple, an online form then they send you a kit to swab your cheek. You return the completed kit to them and that's it. I then more or less forgot about the whole thing until yesterday.
Yesterday I had a brief phone call from a nurse at OneMatch saying that I have been shortlisted as a potential match for someone. She kept the conversation short, I suppose to give me the night to sleep on it, and called back for a phone interview today. We went over the possibilities for if I was the best match or not and explained the whole process to me. I go for bloodwork next week and should know in the next couple of months if I'm the best match or not.
Given how much of a Canadian mutt I am I never really expected to be called. I'd like to encourage everyone to register if you're eligible -- you never know if there's someone out there you can help.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by Lori on Wed Jul 20, 2011 4:34 pm

I took the opportunity to sign up for the Bone Marrow Donor database, too. I hope to get called one day just like you, Rebecca!



I hope you're a match for the person in need.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by edbson on Wed Jul 20, 2011 4:43 pm

Good luck! I am registered here, and have donated. It is a long, and somewhat painful process, but worth it.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by 2BzzOrNot2Bzz on Wed Jul 20, 2011 6:29 pm

That is so awesome of you ladies!! I wonder if I'm eligible to register. I have been turned away from the blood bank every year for severe anemia.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by bizzeedee on Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:17 pm

kudos to you who have signed up and might eventually go thru the process... the donor will be greatful.

sadly, I have such a low pain threshold when it comes to needles, not to mention low blood pressure (so can't give blood), I just can't talk myself into doing so.
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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by Rebecca1340 on Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:19 pm

I'm anemic too, although not too bad. Just bad enough that they don't let me donate blood. If I eat extra iron rich foods I'm usually ok. When I told the nurse about it today she said the criteria are different from donating blood so I should be ok, but that I might want to start taking iron pills or multivitamins with iron now to boost my levels now in case I am chosen.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by Lori on Thu Jul 21, 2011 7:52 am

I struggle with my iron levels, too. I was always afraid I'd be turned away when donating blood. I finally had a long talk about it with my pharmacist. I asked how I could eat all the iron rich foods they suggested plus eat a bowl of cereal or take a multivitamin that claims to have 100% of the daily iron requirement and still have low iron. He said that the 100% daily requirement listed on food labels are based on what men need. Menstruating women need a lot more, especially if periods are heavy. He also said only a small amount can be absorbed at one time, anyhow.

Now, I take low dose iron tablets with meals during the week or so before I know I have to donate blood. And a nice steak for d inner the night before usually gets the iron level quite high. I've also seen reports that suggest that drinking tea can block iron absorption, so I try to remember not to drink much right before a donation.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by edbson on Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:38 am

I take Heme iron, it is iron made from cows blood, and raises my level faster.

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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by kleenaechs on Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:07 am

Congrats to you and good luck Rebecca
Here is a good article about iron:
http://www.canadianliving.com/health/nutrition/how_much_iron_is_enough.php

Low levels of stomach acid can also be a factor in low iron levels. This happens as we age and for many other reasons. It is actually a much bigger problem than many would think. It can cause heart burn and acid reflux. If you go to the doctor with those complaints, you are likely to be put on an acid reducer. They are very popular these days, but actually not needed by many of the people taking them. In fact, they will make your issues worse if your problem is actually due to too little stomach acid. This will cause you to digest even less of your food and supplements, no matter how much you take. Here is some good info on this:
http://www.nutritional-healing.com.au/content/articles-content.php?heading=Stomach%20acid%20deficiency%20%28Hypochlorhydria%29



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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by tara on Thu Jul 21, 2011 1:00 pm

That's awesome Rebecca! I registered when it was posted here and sent it all back, I've never heard anything. How awesome to be someone's hero. I HATE needles and know a couple people who have donated that say it's extremely painful, but whats a bit of pain compared to saving a childs life?
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Re: Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Donations

Post by agaphmou on Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:41 pm

I so proud of you all who registered ,although I also understand Dee's fear of pain. I have considered it myself but with my medical problem and all the meds I take I don't think they would take me,even if they did take me ,it would be extra hard for me to recover.
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