I'm concerned about my daughter registering to donate bone marrow

[deleted account] ( 17 moms have responded )

My daughter is at college, where I think recruitment is more active for donors. I'm concerned about her safety, possible risks, etc. I'm not sure they give proper screening to make sure she is healthy enough and whether she is making an informed decision for herself. Personally, I don't want her to do it. I don't think she is strong enough physically. Have other parents had their daughter's go through this?

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My friend's son was diagnosed with leukemia in November of 2009. A bunch of us lined up to be a bone marrow donor even though we knew that we wouldn't match his type. He died 6 months later without being able to get a potentially life saving transplant. Other kids in his ward were able to get the bone marrow transplant and most are still alive today. What would I give to see this little boy that I watched practice violin, play with kittens on the carpet and teach my youngest son the joys of Harry Potter breath again? If your daughter can help another child like Ian, you will have one more thing to feel proud of.

Linda - posted on 01/29/2010

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I donated for over 30 years with no problems. It gives one a good feeling knowing you are helping someone in need.

Nester - posted on 01/23/2010

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Dear Leslie,if I were you i will not also allow my children to go under that kind of activity donating of bone marrow at a young age is very risky it may lead to several complication in her body specially internally.. it maybe life threatening..

Michele - posted on 01/23/2010

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It is highly unlikely that she will even be chosen, but they will check her out physically at the hospital before doing it, they don't rely on the preliminary health check. My husband is listed on the marrow donor list and I couldn't be more proud. I actually have to go get myself tested. The actual extraction isn't terrible invasive and from what I understand it doesn't hurt as much as it used to. Of course, if they call her she could always refuse.

Erika - posted on 01/21/2010

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Why would you want to stifle such a noble and generous thought? If she is not well enough to donate the screeners at the donation site will tell her. They would not want her to donate unless she was in excellent health.

I would be proud of her. In fact, I don't know her but I am still proud of her.

Deanna - posted on 01/12/2010

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My oldest (almost 31) donated his marrow when he was young (20) and I didn't know about it till after the fact. What he did tell me was they gave him a physical and checked his blood before he could donate. So lets hope your daughter has the same fortune if she is donating.

[deleted account]

There will be a VERY detailed screening process if the need for actual donation is ever needed. Until then it is just wait.....My kids are both blood+ donors and go in on a regular schedule. They started it when they were 17 in High School and the school had donor drives. If you have concerns that she is not 'strong' or 'healthy' enough....I say just get her to have her yearly check up (she's probably due to start some yearly/semi yearly tests anyhow) and 'mention' to your family doctor your concern. He'll discuss it privately with her and you can rest easy at night.....

Diane - posted on 12/31/2009

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I agree completely that you should be proud of her! And donating marrow is really a low risk procedure, and if it saves someone's life that is fantastic. My son has an immune deficiency, he survives on gammaglobulin which is made from the platelets in blood. You have to donate plasma inorder to make gammaglobulin. It takes literally thousands of donars to make ONE treatment for my son. He gets his gammaglobulin by IV every three weeks ( we spend the day in the hospital). He has done this since he was 4 years old, and will continue the rest of his life. So yeah I am grateful for every donar out there and may God bless you. You should know that the people that receive what you donate really do care and appreciate what you do for us. I loved reading about how many of you give blood! Good for you. Will you please consider donating plasma too??? They pay you for that! LOL!!! And my son and others like him do need you.

Heidi - posted on 12/30/2009

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Like Sherry, I am also registered to be a marrow donor. They took a blood sample when I signed up and I hope that one day I will get a call saying that I am a good match for someone. So far I have been on the registry for about 13 years and no call yet.

This is not something to be taken lightly, however, I don't think you need to worry about your daughter being at risk If her marrow is needed, the doctors will put her through a series of tests to determine if she is truly a good candidate and able to safely donate at that time.
Please put your fears to rest and be proud that your daughter has made such a generous offer to help someone in need!

Christine - posted on 12/29/2009

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my daughter has started donating blood. I am very proud of her for thinking of others. I know that they won't let her if they don't think she is up to it.

Kathy - posted on 12/23/2009

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Oh my, what a wonderfully thoughtful daughter you have to be willing to do such a noble thing! You must have done something so absolutely right to make her so giving. So have you asked her all these questions that concern you? I used to give blood on a regular basis and there is such screening that goes on to make sure you are able. Notice I said "used to." Because of the screening, they made sure I was healthy enough to give blood each time. When I showed signs of anemia I had to stop. The vampire friends at the hospital would not take my blood and advise me to see my doctor. (No, I was not anemic because of my donations! LOL!) Another time a nurse discovered I had an unusual heartbeat and would not allow me to give blood until I had my doc check it out. Turns out I have a hidden beat so it sounds like my heart is into jazz as well!

There are also tons of health related questions you have to answer on form after form to make certain one is eligible for marrow donation. One just can't walk in and decide to leave some marrow. Believe me, they are not about endangering her life to save another life but about saving lives with healthy, able donors. If she is healthy, the donating process does not take away from her life. I understand the process can be quite uncomfortable. They will advise her to eat her green leafies and that the spot where the donation is taken will be painful for a bit. Other than that, be proud you raised a wonderful human being who understands the interconnectedness of spirit we all have in choosing to serve in such a life-giving way.

Robin - posted on 12/15/2009

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Registering is different than donating. I believe they just do a mouth swab or take a blood sample in order to define her "type". Then if sometime in the future they find someone who needs a transplant, she would have to meet certain health guidelines in order to donate. She's talking about wanting to save lives. You should be very proud. Take a look at www.marrow.org.

Sherry - posted on 12/15/2009

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I'm on the donor list - have been for years. I've yet to me needed. But I think you should be proud of your daughter's willingness to be a part of the registry. If she's needed then the doctors will look at whether or not she's up to the challenge. Its hard for us moms to remember that when our kids become adults our role needs to change. We have to trust that the faith and teachings we've instilled in our kids when they were children has been deeply planted with strong, healthy roots. Sounds to me like you've done something right Leslie!

Nani - posted on 12/12/2009

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I would be like you... concern for my child. If you haven't already talked with her of the reason why, start now. I would also recommend her seeing a doctor both of you feel confident with to provide a safer way of becoming a donor without all the additional risks associated with pre-screening at the college. This way any health concerns you have for her are addressed and both of you can feel better about the choices she is making.

Carolyn - posted on 12/12/2009

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I have been a donor for years. I give blood when my iron level is good. My son decided to be a blood donor. Where my daughter chose not to. My husband gives platlets and blood and we are proud to do so. It is a personal choice. I would tell her your concerns and make sure she is asking all the right questions. If she is of age you will have no say, because she is considered a adult. But, I am sure if you have a heart to heart talk she will understand and in the end it will be her choice. Best of luck and God Bless.

Chris - posted on 12/07/2009

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my two oldest donors are blood donors and they made the decision on their own, which we greatly support. Donting bone marrow is a extremely big decision. Have you spoken with her on why she chose to become a marrow donor? See what information she has been provided and you can always contact the school to get more info from them as well as to how they screen people on becoming donors. You can even speak with your MD or MD's cordinator and get more info.

Jan - posted on 12/07/2009

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Actually, my daughter has started donating blood and is looking into pherisis(sp?). I am very proud of her for thinking of others. I know that they won't let her if they don't think she is up to it.

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