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A Personal Journey of a Stem Cell Transplant.
In May of this year, I had an extremely challenging experience. As someone who is dedicated about assisting others, I was astonished and heartbroken to discover that I was that somebody. I was diagnosed with Acute Kidney Failure. To save my failing kidneys, a crucial intervention was required. The physicians did everything in their power to save them and succeeded. Nonetheless, a greater monster was responsible for my kidney failure. That is Myeloma Multiple. After three years of numerous chemotherapies, my condition did not respond as hoped. The last remaining alternative was a stem cell transplant, which was the only chance I had to regain my health. I was unaware of the extent to which the operation would affect me. Over three months after the transplant, I continue to browse at old photographs and savor each minute of my prior life. This essay will serve as an account of my own stem cell recovery journey and will also offer advice on how to prepare for a stem cell transplant in order to prevent potential problems.
How Does Stem Cell Therapy Help Multiple Myeloma Patients?
Multiple myeloma is a kind of bone marrow-affecting blood malignancy. This component of the immune system generates new red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Multiple myeloma patients may get infections or severe illnesses if their bone marrow becomes overly active in creating new cells (like blood infections or heart infections). This is why multiple myeloma is treated with stem cell treatment. The collected stem cells are then reinjected into a vein. This can strengthen the immune system and aid the body in fighting off diseases.
Stem cells can also be utilized to treat different forms of cancer, as well as anemia and autoimmune illnesses.
- -Mesenchymal stem cells are present in connective tissues such as bone, cartilage, and tendon. Advantages: can transform into cells similar to your own and can aid in muscle regeneration.
- – hematopoietic stem cells – located in bone marrow and able to contribute to the production of all blood cells. No risk of infection makes the product simple to use.
- – embryonic stem cells – present in the early embryo and capable of becoming all types of body cells. Possess the capacity to proliferate in all tissues
- – umbilical cord stem cells – stem cells from a newborn’s umbilical chord Compared to other forms of stem cells, embryonic stem cells have lower dangers
- – umbilical cord blood – the stem cell-rich fluid contained within a cord blood. Possesses the potential to cure a broad range of illnesses.
- – mesenchymal stem cell-based treatments — a form of cell therapy that employs mesenchymal stem cells.
My experience with stem cell harvesting
My stem cell harvesting involved two distinct stages. The first portion was a donation. I was subjected to a battery of tests to establish my ability to endure the treatment. Next, I had an injection to promote my body’s production of stem cells. Then, a technique called “Harvesting” was performed, in which my blood was separated and collected using a special centrifuge. After collection, the cells were frozen in preparation for reinfusion into my body. Five days previous to having my stem cells restored to my bloodstream, I was required to administer daily injections. These medications cause my stem cells to exit my bone marrow and enter my bloodstream so that the maximal number of stem cells required for the transplant may be harvested.
How did I feel about obtaining my stem cells following harvesting?
The day I visited the hospital for the actual transplant, I was surrounded by nurses who were not only skilled in doing the process but also in assisting me by explaining each stage of my trip. During the transplant, I had no sensations. There were both serious and amusing times in the room’s atmosphere. In my situation, six little bags containing my life-saving stem cells were put sequentially into my vein. I was neither ill nor overwhelmed. It felt like “I’ve been here before,” and I appreciated my time of rest. Then, I was returned to my room to recuperate and recover. Ten days were spent in the hospital for my care. Upon doctors’ clearance, I was subsequently sent home.
The path to rehabilitation was difficult but life-altering.
The first few days helped me comprehend the impacts of both chemotherapies (to prepare my stem cells for harvesting as well as knowledge for harvesting) on my body. Regarding my time in the hospital, I recall approximately two to three days where I was exhausted and slept extensively. A few days of discomfort were required to give me a new lease on life.I
Now that the transplant is over, what was my experience like?
My experience was one of excitement combined with a knowledge of a change in my health. I am very thankful for the generosity of time and friendship given to me by the nurses and the doctors who followed me throughout the procedure and afterward. It was a life-changing experience of huge dimensions. Not only has my body recovered from the transplant, but I’m about to celebrate my 100th-day post-transplant. That is the mark of importance because it marks the time in which complications are rare and my body can focus on healing. I’m excited to be alive and well. I’m also looking forward to my future and pleased at how easy it was to undergo a life-transforming procedure.
In spite of all the hype and negative press I read and heard about transplants, I discovered exactly the opposite. At no time was I blindsided by a lack of knowledge about the status of my transplant, but was informed each day of the progress I was making and what to expect as each day passed. There were two and a half days where I was fatigued and slept but other than that my experience was very positive and without complications. The hardest part of the procedure was the isolation I incurred by the need for a closed environment. Other than that, I would not discourage anyone who needs a bone marrow transplant from undergoing the procedure. It has changed my life forever. Become educated as to what to expect and ask any questions you may have prior to the procedure. Knowledge as to what to expect removes the fear and anxiety from the procedure.
I realized the exact opposite despite all the hoopla and negative press I read and heard about transplants. Never was I unaware of the status of my transplant; rather, I was informed daily of my progress and what to anticipate as each day passed. I was exhausted and slept for two and a half days, but other than that, my experience was quite great and without difficulties. Isolation imposed by the necessity for a closed setting was the most challenging aspect of the technique. I would not discourage somebody who requires a bone marrow transplant from undergoing the treatment for any other reason. It has permanently altered my life. Learn what to anticipate and ask any questions you may have before the surgery. Knowledge of what to anticipate alleviates worry and anxiety during a process.