Little Sister Saves Her Brother By Donating Bone Marrow

Ahmed, the 18-year-old boy from Iraq, underwent successful bone marrow transplantation in Manipal Hospital in Bengaluru.

Back in his native, Ahmed had undergone a splenectomy, from where he was referred to Bengaluru for further treatment.

According to Dr. Mallikarjun Kalashetty, consultant Hematology, Hemato -Oncology & Bone Marrow Transplantation at Manipal Hospital, said that Ahmed required an allogeneic bone marrow transplantation.


“The best donors for such patients are the human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-matched siblings who are normal or with a minor form of hemoglobinopathy (a hereditary condition involving an abnormality in the structure of haemoglobin) or thalassemia (a blood disorder involving lower-than-normal amounts of an oxygen-carrying protein),” Dr. Kalashetty explained.

However, things were not as easy for the medical team at the hospital, considering the donor’s age, weight, and blood volume. The process required 8-10 liters of blood from the donor who was three years old and weighed 18kgs. The donor only had a blood volume of 1.3 liters.

The donor had to be sedated to elicit co-operation during apheresis, which involves extracting blood and separating components, and preserving the stem cells through cryopreservation.

The dead spaces in the apheresis machine were filled with compatible RBC to counter the low volume of blood going into the machine. Similarly, to reduce the fluid overload, the volume of the fluid going into the body of the child was monitored.

The allogeneic bone-marrow transplantation was successful, and Ahmed has now recovered from the sickle-cell disease. The quality of his life has improved significantly. Minor complications after transplantation like mucositis, febrile neutropenia, and viral reactivation, which were effectively managed.

Source: Medindia

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