Bone Marrow Transplant | Arabian Gulf Medical Tourism
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Bone Marrow Transplant

Bone marrow transplant is both convenient and financially feasible with WorldMed Assist. You receive the benefit of our expertise and the compassion of our registered nurses. We are affiliated with hospitals India that are approved by the Joint Commission International (JCI) and associated with respected US medical institutions, including Johns Hopkins and Harvard Medical. Our case managers are registered nurses who consult with you to make certain all your concerns and questions are taken care of to your satisfaction.

What is bone marrow transplant?

Bone marrow is a soft, fatty tissue inside your breast, skull, hip, rib and spine bones and contains stem cells.  Stem cells produce red and white blood cells and platelets, which enable your blood to clot.

Bone marrow transplants become necessary as the only treatment option for some patients with forms of leukemia, severe anemia from destruction of bone marrow or malfunction and various immune deficiency diseases.

The following table shows the estimated U.S. average billed charges per transplant in 2008, as revealed in the Milliman Research Report of April, 2008:

Transplant Allogeneic Autologous
30 Days Pre-Transplant $30,400 $31,300
Procurement $29,400 $21,200
Hospital Transplant Admission $380,700 $169,900
Physician during Transplant $19,600 $10,600
180 Days Post-Transplant Admission $197,100 $62,100
OP Immuno-Suppressants and other Medications $19,600 $5,300
TOTALS $676,800 $300,400

Bone marrow transplant costs in the United States may be impossible for patients to manage, especially for those without insurance coverage.  Yet a bone marrow transplant India costs substantially less and this life-saving procedure can be within financial reach.

Bone marrow transplant procedure

A bone marrow transplant is not a surgical procedure; rather, it is much like receiving a blood transfusion.

Your diseased or malfunctioning bone narrow is destroyed by chemotherapy or radiation prior to receiving healthy stem cells through an infusion by a catheter.  The infusion will take several hours.

The goal of a bone marrow transplant is for the new stem cells to travel to your bone cavities, form new bone marrow and produce normal blood cells.

There are three different sources of bone narrow for transplants:

  1. Autologous:    Stem cells are withdrawn from you before chemotherapy and radiation.  After your bone marrow has been destroyed, your stem cells are returned.  You are, in essence, your own donor.
  2. Allogeneic:   Stem cells are supplied by a donor.  Blood tests are conducted to ascertain the donor is a good genetic match with your bone narrow to prevent your body from rejecting the donors stem cells.
  3. Umbilical:    Stem cells are extracted from the umbilical cord of a baby at birth and various tests performed before they are frozen until needed.

Bone marrow transplants carry risks, as do all medical procedures.  The level of risk is dependent on your medical condition, age, health, pre-bone marrow transplant treatments and type of bone marrow transplant you have.  It is strongly recommended you speak with your medical specialists to ensure you fully understand the risks involved.

You can expect your hospitalization period to be up to eight weeks.

Bone marrow preparation

You will undergo a series of tests to determine if you are healthy enough to receive a transplant.  Your major organs will examined for any impairment.  These tests are done on an outpatient basis.

A bone marrow transplant is an enormous physical and psychological strain.  Preparation is very important for a bone marrow transplant recipient.

Several days before your transplant, a catheter will be placed into a large vein just above your heart for administration of medications and blood test samples.  You will be given strong dosages of chemotherapy or radiation, or both, to destroy your bone marrow.

One or two days after you have finished the chemotherapy regime, you will receive your bone marrow transplant.

Bone marrow recovery

You will be easily disposed to infection and bleeding as you wait for your new stem cells to begin producing normal blood cells.  There will be strict protocol for medical staff and visitors to prevent infections and restrictions on what items are permitted in your room.

You will likely receive large amount of antibiotics and blood transfusions during the first 2 to 4 weeks after the transplant.  Once blood tests show that your bone marrow is generating normal blood cells, you will be weaned off the antibiotics and no longer require blood transfusions.

Your recovery period will be extended.  After discharge from the hospital, another 2 to 4 months are expected until a full recovery.  During this time, you will need to be monitored closely and your activities will be limited to avoid infection.

Although a bone marrow transplant is an arduous experience, many patients have an enhanced quality of life afterwards.