DOES IT HURT?
WHAT HAPPENS IF I’M A MATCH?
If you’re a potential match for a patient, Be The Match will contact you to see if you’d
like to continue with the process. You always have a choice, but we hope you’ll say yes.
If you say yes, the next step is getting a full physical and blood test to make sure you’re healthy to go through with the donation. Your health as a donor is our priority.
If you’re a match, you’ll go through one of two donation methods. The patient’s
doctor will choose the method that‘s best for the patient, and you will always be informed.
STEM CELL COLLECTION
LEAST COMMON PROCEDURE
Doctors use needles to withdraw liquid marrow from both sides of the back of the hip bone—not the spine. Donors are given anesthesia and feel no pain during the donation.
It’s an outpatient procedure, so most donors are home the same day.
After donation, donors may feel sore for a few days to a week, but normal activities may be resumed the day after. Marrow replenishes within a few weeks.
MOST COMMON PROCEDURE
Blood is drawn from one arm, then passes through a machine that filters the stem cells from the rest of the blood, and then returns the blood to the donor’s body.
Before the donation, donors will receive injections of filgrastim for five days to increase blood stem cell count in the blood. Flu-like symptoms may be experienced.
After donation, 99% of the filgrastim is gone and stem cell count normalizes.