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A Small Sacrifice

10 Feb

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Are you a bone marrow donor?

If you are in good health, you should be. It could literally save someone’s life. Donors are always needed, especially for under-represented races such as African Americans and Latinos. And matches are more common within the same race.

I registered to be a donor as a college student but did not become a match until I was almost 40. I donated stem cells in November to a 12 year-old girl with leukemia. To date, she has engrafted- my cells are now working in her body. We still won’t know the outcome for some time, but this is promising.

There are two ways to donate: bone marrow extraction (surgical) and PBSC (non surgical). It is an easy procedure for the donor and such a small sacrifice with a big return. I had some discomfort from the medication that I took for five days leading up to the actual donation (like the flu); other than that, it was painless.

When I received the letter saying that I was a possible match, my eyes teared up. There was no question as to whether I would do it. To be a match to a non-relative is a miracle. And I thought of my children- what if they needed marrow, blood, an organ and I couldn’t give it to them? What if their life depended on the compassion of a stranger? I would hope that someone could answer my prayer.

Register now at http://www.marrow.org.

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Posted by on February 10, 2013 in Family, Health, Race

 

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