November 3, 2008

The Month of November is National Marrow Awareness Month in the US. Online registration with the NMDP is free.

November 3-9, 2008 is Canadian Stem Cell Awareness Week. Go to the OneMatch site to find out how to Spread The Word.

November 17-23, 2008 is Anthony Nolan Week in the UK. Check the Anthony Nolan Trust media centre for their latest YouTube video.

So let's try and build some awareness: here are 5 important points that you should know about registration and donation.

1. 70% of people requiring a stem cell transplant need an unrelated donor.

The first choice is a family member, but more people will have to rely on a stranger.

2. Register by providing a blood sample in Quebec or the UK, or a cheek swab sample in the rest of Canada or the US.

In the US, UK and most of Canada, you can even fill in your registration online and get a kit sent to your home.

This is a free service in Canada and the UK as well as many other countries. In the US, there are ways to register for free.

3. Donation is safe, fast, and not risky.

You never donate stem cells or bone marrow at risk to your own life. Whatever is donated replenishes itself naturally in the body.

4. There are 2 ways to do it.

70% of people will donate in a process that takes a few hours and is similar to donating blood. For a few days leading up to the extraction process, the donor receives injections to produce additional stem cells in the body.

30% of people will donate by having liquid marrow extracted from within the back of the pelvic bone.

5. Many people cannot find matches.

There are 8 blood types, but for a stem cell match there are several million combinations of possible human leukocyte antigen (HLA) profiles - 150 billion different possibilities in theory.

Even though blood is important, and people who need transplants (in addition to many other people) need donated blood to survive, people with a rare blood type can probably find a match in a room with 100 people of different ethnicity. For someone looking for a stem cell match, they may need a stadium of 20000 or 50 stadiums (or more) to find a match.

Then they have to hope that person is on the registry.

The most likely match within the general population is someone of the same or similar ethnicity.


How To Register in Quebec
How To Register in Canada
How To Register Online in the United States

Stem Cell Awareness and the Black Community

By the Numbers: Still a State of Emergency

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posted by Tamu at

3 Comments:

Anonymous spot_the_dog said...

"Register by providing a blood sample in Quebec or the UK, or a cheek swab sample in the rest of Canada or the US."

Mind if I piggyback off your post, mate, in case you've got the odd Aussie reading here?

Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry

Good on you, Emru & Tamu. I wish you both all the best.

November 6, 2008 4:23 AM  
Blogger Barbara Spoerri said...

Just a few words telling you that I am thinking of you & sending my Love & Strength to all of you ! & more healing energy to you Emru (Vicky & Max). Saw Max tonight for a about 15 Min. & was happy to give him a big hug for all of you !!!
wishing you a good & peaceful night & sweet dreams !!!

ox Barbara

November 6, 2008 11:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blessings and prayers are coming your way from Jerusalem.
Esther Hecht (CE-L)

November 7, 2008 2:09 AM  

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