Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplant | Cook Children’s

Posted: January 8, 2018 at 2:41 pm

Certain diseases and treatments can deplete a child’s healthy stem cells. Sometimes the body needs help to replenish those cells. When this happens, your child may require a very complex process called a stem cell or bone marrow transplant.

Since 1986, Cook Children’s Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplant program has performed more than 1,000 transplants in children with cancer, blood disorders or inherited conditions. That’s what makes this program one of the more diverse and experienced pediatric transplant programs in the Southwest.

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Over the last three years, 30 to 40 transplants were performed every year for a variety of diseases, with leukemia being the most common primary diagnosis.

The goal of the program is to provide a stem cell or marrow transplant to any child who needs one and to improve the outcomes for these patients who do not have better therapy options. We work to achieve this goal through excellent clinical care from several services within Cook Children’s, quality initiatives and ongoing comparison of our processes and performance against large academic transplant centers and international data.

Common referral diagnoses:

Stem cells are cells in the body that have the potential to turn into anything, such as a skin cell, a liver cell, a brain cell, or a blood cell. Stem cells that turn into blood cells are called hematopoietic stem cells. These cells are capable of developing into the three types of blood cells:

Stem cells may come from the patient or from a donor. Stem cells that come from a patient may come from their own cord blood cells if they were harvested from the mother’s placenta immediately after the child was born and frozen for later use. Stem cells may also be harvested and frozen before the child or teen undergoes treatment. These stem cells are thawed and put back into the patient’s body after treatment is complete.

Donor stem cells come from a compatible family member or through a match from a national registry of donors. Depending on the particular needs of your child, one or all three types of a donor’s stem cells will be harvested:

While all three types can replenish a patient’s blood and bone marrow cells, there are advantages and disadvantages to each. The doctor will discuss these issues and suggest the best type of stem cell for your child’s illness.

If your child has been diagnosed, you probably have lots of questions. We can help. If you would like to schedule an appointment, refer a patient or speak to our staff, please call our offices at 682-885-4007.

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Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplant | Cook Children’s

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