Haemato-Oncology & Stem Cell Transplant (BMT)
Stem cell transplantation commonly known to people as Bone Marrow Transplantation is an important modality of therapy to cure incurable cancers and other blood related diseases.
Normally the blood is formed in bone marrow, that is the juicy part of the bone. Majority of blood cancers begin in this space. It is the home for blood cancer (Leukemia) cells to reside and cause trouble if left to stay there. These are resistant to conventional chemotherapies which are given for leukemia.
Majority of other diseases like Aplastic anemia, Thalassemia, Myeloma, Immuno Deficiency disorders do start in bone marrow. All these diseases are with bone marrow transplantation at Sri Shankara Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, Bangalore.
Dr. Nataraj K S
Chief, Senior Consultant
Adult and Paediatric Haematologist
Comprehensive Bone Marrow Transplantation Services at SSCHRC
Complex & sophisticated infrastructure: To support and protect the patients during their most vulnerable phase of no immunity.
State-of-the-art laboratory support: To assess donors' and patients' samples for matching and early identification of potential signs of infections or other illnesses
Competent team: Team not only includes a competent transplant physician but competent nurses, technicians, housekeeping staff, engineers, pharmacists and auxiliary staff, who play a crucial role in the patient's road to recovery
How is the procedure done?
We match between patient and potential donors using DNA PCR based HLA typing.
Once a match is identified, we evaluate the donor for fitness to donate and also evaluate for diseases donor can transmit to patient.
We evaluate patient for fitness to choose the right therapeutic strategies.
Once we have both evaluations in hand, we start with giving high dose chemotherapy or radiation to patients which will kill 99.9% of blood forming cells in bone marrow (which will have cancer cells or diseased cells), which typically lasts for 4-5 days. We choose doses carefully to make sure that we do not damage the other organs of body.
In the mean time we collect normal stem cells (blood forming cells) from donor using a special technique called apheresis using a specialized equipment called Therapeutic apheresis machine.
Once we have donor cells in hand we administer the donor cells through the large venous access (Central line or Hickman line) to patient.
These stem cells reach bone marrow which is their home and sit there and prepare towards forming new blood cells.
In about 10-20 days depending on different types of transplant these stem cells produce normal hemoglobin, white cells and platelets.
Types of Transplantation
1. Autologous transplantation: where patients' own stem cells are used.
Eg., Relapse Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Multiple Myeloma, Neuroblastoma Relapse Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Plasma cell disorders, POEMS syndrome, Primary amyloidosis
2. Allogeneic: where stem cells from a donor is used. Can be
Siblings or other family: partially matched
Eg., Cancers - Acute leukemia, Acute Myeloid Leukemia, Chronic Leukemia Myelodysplastic Syndromes
Non Cancers - Aplastic Anemia, Hemoglobinopathies (Thalassemia etc), Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes, Immune Deficiencies, Inborn errors of metabolism, Adrenoleukodystrophy, Platelet function disorders
3. Cord: Stem cells from cord blood bank is used