Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bone Marrow Typing and Registry

Here is some information if you want to help LLS patients and maybe save a life...


Every year, thousands of adults and children need bone marrow transplants — a procedure which may be their only chance for survival. Although some patients with leukemia or other cancers have a genetically matched family member who can donate, about 70 percent do not. These patients' lives depend on finding an unrelated individual with a compatible tissue type, often within their own ethnic group, who is willing to donate marrow for them.

As of January 2006 the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) has facilitated over 20,000 unrelated bone marrow transplants and the national Registry has over 6 million volunteer donors. There is a critical need for more volunteer donors. Many patients, especially people of color, cannot find a compatible donor among those on the Registry. Patients and donors must have matching tissue types, and these matches are most often found between people of the same racial and ethnic background. A large, ethnically diverse group of prospective donors will give more patients a chance for survival.

Bone marrow typing is now a simple and painless. It only requires a swab of the cells in your cheek to get the information they need.

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