Author: Dr. Vijaya chandar, MBBS
Dr.Reshmitha.V , MBBS,DDM
Recently, when we spoke to a couple of friends, we came to know that the awareness about the Stem cell donation was not that widespread although it is very common in many developed nations and bone marrow registry which is also called as stem cell registry is compulsory in many developed nations. So, I wanted to create an awareness about the same.
First of all, many of you might have a doubt of what is this stem cell? It is nothing but one type of cell present in the long bones of our body which produces all the kind of blood cells like WBC, RBC etc,. It plays a very important role in our immunity against bacteria, viruses etc and also other important functions of our body.
So, who require stem cell as a treatment? There are a number of disease like BLOOD CANCERS(in general terms), GENETIC DISEASES which affect the stem cells. It can either cause abnormal, decreased or increased production of Blood Cells. And there are many genetic disorders like Thalassemia, Sickle Cell Anemia,lymphomas,leukemias etc for which the children are taking monthly blood transfusions inspite of which they have decreased lifespan. All these can be treated with just an injection of genetically identical donor stem cell. The treatment can greatly increase the quality of life of the patient’s.
The next big question that comes to people’s mind after reading about stem cell donation is where can I donate and is the process safe and painless? There is a voluntary organization called as DATRI which runs an international stem cell registry. The registration is very simple. Just log onto www.datri.org and register yourself with your address, email id and mobile no. And you will be receiving the swab kit along with the application form to the registered address.
Taking the swab for genetic testing is very easy. Just brush up your inner cheeks with the brush provided then fill the form and send it back to the organization.
After this process your DNA will be analyzed and if your DNA matches with any of the patients the organization will call you for Stem Cell donation. And each genetic processing takes around 15 days and 2500 rupees. So, donating how much you can will help sponsor your genetic analysis.
And about the donation process, it’s just like donating blood. You will be given an injection and then stem cells can enter the blood stream from which you can donate it just like a regular blood transfusion and it is completely safe.
We have registered ourselves with Datri. And we have also our friends family to register for this noble cause. Let us start the change the nation needs and save all those innocent children and people who also deserve to lead a normal life like us.