About BMT

Dr. McCarthy explains the difference between allogeneic and autologous transplants and the level of care needed to ensure a successful outcome.

Roswell Park offers blood and marrow transplantation (BMT) for adult patients between the ages of 18 and 80. Eligible adult patients may undergo transplant for:

Who is eligible for a blood or marrow transplant? Dr. McCarthy explains.

Understanding BMT: Allogeneic and Autologous

There are two basic types of BMT:

Bone marrow is the soft material inside your bones where your blood cells are manufactured. Healthy bone marrow produces the red cells, white cells, and platelets that carry oxygen throughout your body, fight infection, and cause your blood to clot after an injury.

Timing is Critical

It is very important that you and your doctor start the BMT process as soon as possible after your diagnosis is confirmed. About 15 percent of patients who come to Roswell Park to be evaluated for BMT cannot undergo transplant, because they were referred too late. The longer you wait, the more time the disease has to move ahead, and that reduces the chance for a successful transplant.

It may take several weeks to find a suitable donor or collect your own blood stem cells, apply for insurance approval, line up caregivers to help you after your transplant, and prepare you for the transplant.

Planning for Your Future

Even if you are already receiving another type of treatment or are in remission, come to Roswell Park right away to begin the BMT process. This will help save precious time if you should need a transplant in the future. You can take the first steps now, undergoing evaluation, starting the search for a donor if you need one, or collecting and storing your own cells for the future, if you need them. Then, if BMT becomes necessary because your current treatment stops working or your disease comes back, everything will be ready to go.