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Methodist Healthcare

Blood and marrow transplant

A blood and marrow transplant is a procedure where healthy stem cells are taken from one area of your body or from another person (a donor), and placed into your bloodstream to boost cell growth in your bone marrow.

Adult and pediatric transplant and cellular therapy program in San Antonio

Blood and marrow transplant procedures can be truly life changing. We support you in that journey.

At Methodist Healthcare, we know the concerns that come with blood and marrow transplants (BMT) for adults and children. Through diagnostic testing and lab work, our board-certified doctors develop the treatment plan that's best for your needs. As the only adult blood cancer treatment program in San Antonio and as a leader of advanced cancer care, pediatric blood and marrow transplantation and clinical research, we are here to provide you with comprehensive, compassionate care you deserve.

Related Specialties

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Blood and marrow conditions we treat

We perform blood and marrow transplants to treat a variety of conditions in adults and children, including:

  • Amyloidosis
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Hemoglobinopathies
  • Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Leukemia
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Myelodysplastic syndrome
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Testicular cancer

Our blood and marrow transplant services

Methodist Healthcare is proud to offer comprehensive blood and marrow transplant services to our adult and pediatric patients.

Our leading blood and marrow transplant program

Our blood and marrow transplant program has been recognized for our commitment to excellence in the field, with accolades and accomplishments that include: 

Additionally, as a member of the Sarah Cannon Transplant and Cellular Therapy Network, we have access to a number of high-quality infrastructure, training and research resources.

Blood and marrow transplant candidacy

A blood and marrow transplant requires a thorough consultation with your physician and a referral. Once referred, the transplant team schedules your first visit to the clinic. During the appointment, you will meet the transplant physician and spend a significant amount of time with other transplant professionals who further educate you about transplantation.

If you, your family and transplant team decide a transplant is the best option, you will undergo testing to complete the evaluation process. The type of transplant most appropriate determines how quickly the procedure can be performed.

Private insurance, as well as Medicare and Medicaid, may provide coverage for blood and marrow transplants. Some costs may not be fully reimbursed. Financial coordinators and social workers will work with you to ensure you understand coverage benefits and help minimize out-of-pocket expenses by accessing various community resources.

Blood and marrow transplant procedures

Your transplant physician will discuss which type of transplant will provide the best clinical outcome. We routinely perform the following types of transplants:

  • Autologous blood and marrow transplant – Stem cells are collected, stored and re-infused back to the same patient after high-dose chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments.
  • Tandem autologous transplant – Also known as a double autologous transplant, this procedure requires the patient to undergo two planned autologous blood and marrow transplants within six months. Stem cells are collected once before the initial transplant and half are used for each procedure. The second transplant is performed after recovery from the first procedure.
  • Allogeneic blood and marrow transplant – Stem cells are taken from one person and given to another. The patient receives stem cells from a matched or partially matched family member, an unrelated donor or umbilical cord blood.
  • Umbilical cord blood transplant – This method uses stem cells, which have been collected from a clamped, separated umbilical cord following delivery. The stem cells are then processed and frozen until transplantation.

Blood and marrow transplant recovery

Recipients of blood and marrow transplants are closely followed in the clinic daily after their operation to ensure there are no infections or rejections. You may still feel too weak to fully engage in normal activities for several weeks, but you are encouraged to continue participating in daily activities, as tolerated, to increase strength and energy.

Allogeneic transplant recipients are at risk for developing graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD). With this condition, the new blood and marrow stem cells begin fighting against, or “rejecting,” your tissues. To minimize the risk of GVHD, doctors prescribe immunosuppressive or “anti–rejection” medications.

The chances of infection and rejection are highest during the first month after blood and marrow transplant when the medications taken to suppress the immune system are at their peak effectiveness. You may be required to wear a mask to limit the risk of infection potentially leading to rejection.

You will be required to have routine follow-up visits. The frequency of visits is discussed at the time of transplant. You’ll be informed when you are able to return to your oncologist for continued care.

A wide range of resources will be available to you and your family, including an oncology support group, social worker, dietitian, financial coordinator and hospital chaplain.

Showing 2 Videos

What is bone marrow stem cell transplant?

Methodist Hospital Medical Director of the Adult BMT Program, Dr. Paul Shaughnessy, explains bone marrow stem cell treatment.

Bone marrow is the spongy tissue inside some of your bones, such as your hip and thigh bones and it contains stem cells.

Our Blood and marrow transplant Locations

Methodist Children's Hospital
7700 Floyd Curl Dr
San Antonio, TX 78229
 (210) 575 - 5437
Methodist Children's Hospital
7700 Floyd Curl Dr
San Antonio, TX 78229
 (210) 575 - 5437