What You Need To Know About BMT
Today, a blood and marrow transplant is available to more people than ever, thanks to advances such as reduced-intensity transplants, haploidentical transplants and cord blood transplants. Increased survival rates have gone hand-in-hand with innovative treatment approaches.
What is a bone marrow transplant?
Bone marrow produces stem cells that are harvested (collected) for a BMT transplant. A donor or the transplant patient him or herself can serve as the source for the bone marrow stem cells. Depending on the care plan devised by our team of specialists, the transplant patient will receive chemotherapy, radiation therapy or a combination of both, to kill her or his cancer cells, immune system, or both. The stem cells are infused (injected) into the patient’s bloodstream where they begin to produce healthy stem cells and bone marrow. From start to finish, the transplant generally takes a few months.
What is bone marrow and what does it do?
Bone marrow is a soft, gelatinous tissue inside some bones. There are two types of bone marrow, red and yellow, which produce the stem cells and blood cells that are essential to a person's health. Healthy bone marrow makes a variety of stem cells:
- White blood cells
- Red blood cells
When is a blood and marrow transplant appropriate?
The science of blood and marrow transplant has advanced rapidly, offering treatment options for diseases once thought incurable. Today, BMT is often the treatment option of choice for patients diagnosed with:
- Acute and chronic leukemia
- Aplastic anemia
- High-risk relapsed lymphoma
- Multiple myeloma
- Immune deficiency disorders
- Relapsed testicular cancer
- Sickle cell anemia
- Bone marrow failure syndromes
- Some solid tumors.
About Immune Effector Cell Therapy
For the past 30 years, adoptive cellular therapy with immune effector cells including a variety of lymphocytes, has been developed at research centers around the world. Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T cells have emerged from the lab as FDA-approved treatments for a variety of cancers. This includes some gene-modified T cells and natural (NK) cells. The future for effector cell therapy is bright, as it becomes the treatment of choice for many cancer patients. Baylor Scott & White Health will continue to play a leading role in these pioneering efforts.
Contact our patient nurse navigators for more information about CAR-T and immune effector cell therapies and clinical trials. Call 214.820.3535 for more information.