Preparing your Body for Blood and Marrow Transplant
Shortly after admission, you will begin a course of therapy to prepare for your stem cell transplant. While the type of chemotherapy and the level of radiation may be different for each patient, its purpose remains the same--destroy the abnormal cells in the body and to prepare the immune system to accept the new stem cells. Physicians and nurses will carefully review and outline this course with you.
You may be offered the chance to participate in experimental studies regarding a new option for treatment. You have the right to choose not to participate in any study. If you are offered the chance to participate, you will be given a written summary of all the information necessary to make this decision, and you will have an opportunity to discuss the study in detail with our staff transplant physicians.
Five to nine days of chemotherapy and radiation treatment (depending on your disease) are required prior to the infusion of new stem cells. Some common side effects of the chemotherapy and radiation are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and mouth sores. In most cases medication can be given to minimize these side effects.
Focusing on Your Inner Strength
The two to three weeks you will be in protective care can be a very stressful period. It is important for you to know that most patients go through periods of feeling bored, lonely, frightened, anxious or depressed. Many patients experience anxiety as they await engraftment. Our transplant unit staff recognizes the need to assist you and your family during this time.
Your family and friends can serve as a powerful influence as they help you focus on your own inner strength to make it through each day.