My Bone Marrow Stem Cell Donation Experience

Today is April 1st, It is my brothers 1st birthday; No Joke 🙂 His “second” birthday is the day he received his new marrow stem cells. There are many people all around us fighting all kinds of real battles, it should put better perspective on the things that so many people in todays day in age get hung up on.

Check out my “Docuseries”

Just some random notes and thoughts about the process:

First and foremost, there is nothing better you can do for a person than saving and extending the life of a brother, family, friend and even a perfect stranger! As I said in the video, “Short term pain for long term gain!”

For those of you that actually read this because you are preparing to be a donor yourself, I will add a few things that were not mentioned in the video. First, don’t be afraid of all those major possible “side affects”, I think they are just covering themselves legally. What they don’t tell you (and I think they should) is that the likelihood is a bit higher that you will go through some extreme spinal pain and headaches. Everyone’s body reacts differently. I have spoke over a dozen people that have gone through this process that have had sever bone pain, and it more/less goes away within a week or so of the donation.

For me personally, I had longer term bone pain, lasted for a solid 6 months. It was mainly in my larger bones, mornings, especially on stairs were quite difficult. The joints in my hands were also regularly in pain. I called and spoke with the doctor at City of Hope and he said it is likely just arthritis, and I should go visit my PCP. He claimed he has never heard of a side affect like that from those injections. I did see my PCP, and it wasn’t arthritis… The short of that story is, it all eventually went away. However it’s issues such as these that do not seem to be recorded about the donors themselves.

During the 5 days on injections, i experienced what I would call “temporary paralysis”. During this “episode” I thought I was having a heart attack. It was short lived, and I was not having a heart attack. Needless to say, it was the scariest moment in my life. The night of the final injections, I did experience some minor hallucinations as well. I told the nurses and doctors about all of this, and they looked at me like I had 2 heads. They said they never heard of such a thing. BUT, you know what??? THE NEVER RECORDED IT EITHER! Donors need to be treated as patients, not as a separate entity. I am sure I am of the minority, but the fact remains, no one took a note of what I said. I often wondered how many others experienced this. I would have rather been made aware of what was to come. Surprises are stressful.

Feel free to comment on this blog, or email me directly at brian@bpway.com

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