Bone Marrow Transplant

During the process of a bone marrow transplant, you are given extremely powerful doses of chemotherapy. Normal chemotherapy uses anticancer drugs to kill the cancer in your body. The use of very strong anticancer drugs for this procedure also starts to destroy your bone marrow. However, in a bone marrow transplant, you donate healthy bone marrow before the chemotherapy begins. This is called harvesting, and the cells are stored for later use. Then, very strong anticancer drugs are used (up to 10 times as strong as normal chemotherapy), often making you weak and susceptible to infection.

The goal of this part of the treatment is to kill all the cancer cells in your body. Your remaining bone marrow is also affected by this chemotherapy. You are monitored closely in the hospital by a team of expert treatment specialists. Later, the healthy bone marrow that was harvested is transplanted back into your body (through your bloodstream) and is used to "rescue" you after the high doses of chemotherapy.

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