There is no doubt that our body is a wonderful machine and it works to perfection day in and day out. However, like all machines, our body also is prone to damages and wear and tear. While most wear and tears are caused by age-related factors, there could be many other reasons that could also cause problems. As it happens with many machines, manufacturing defects could lead to problems. In the same way, genetics could also lead to problems in the human body. In this article we will be talking about the important function of our bone marrow and when bone marrow transplant might become necessary. We also will try and have a look at the benefits and also the shortcomings associated with bone marrow transplant so that our readers can get a complete and total understanding of the same.
What is Bone Marrow Transplant?
Our bone marrow plays a big role in the production of highly important and critical stem cells. These stem cells help in the production of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. All these have important and vital functions. While red blood cells are critical for carrying oxygen and other nutrients to various parts of the body, they also help in muscle formation, tissue formation, and bone formation and so on. On the other hand, white blood cells help in fighting diseases and keep the body safe from viruses and bacteria and other types of germs. Platelets also have an important function and they help in the rapid clotting of the blood in case of external or internal injuries. Hence, our bone marrow (a soft and gel-like substance) plays a big role in helping produce these important substances for the survival and growth of our body.
When Do You Need BMT?
We need a bone marrow transplant when our body fails to make enough stem cells because of some reason. It could be because of some conditions that lead to aplastic anemia. This is a situation where our body does not make enough stem cells or our bone marrow may not be able to make it at all. There also could be some forms of cancer that could lead to the destruction of our bone marrow. In such situations, BMT could have a few benefits as mentioned below:
- It could mean the difference between life and death for many patients.
- It could help to fight off infections and diseases.
- BMT could help to remove or reduce the levels of anemia.
- It may help cancer patients to get a new lease of life.
- It could help in cases where chemotherapy and radiation therapy may have completely or destroyed the bone marrow.
However, at the same time we also should be aware of the possible side effects of BMT:
- Risk of rejection is significant especially when the bone marrow cells are transplanted from a donor.
- Risk of infection could continue for months and also years.
- BMT alone may not guarantee the life and wellness of a person who has been impacted by certain types of dangerous cancer.
To sum up, it is important to do a cost-versus-benefit study before going in for bone marrow transplantation.
Gift of Life Marrow Registry Address: 800 Yamato Rd suite 101 Boca Raton, FL Phone: (800) 962-7769