Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) is the best cure available today for Thalassemia. The novel technique has cured a number of patient’s adults & children suffering from the rare blood disorder. Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder in which the body makes an abnormal form of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the protein molecule in red blood cells that carries oxygen. The disorder results in excessive destruction of red blood cells, which leads to anemia. Hence patients suffering from Thalassemia need regular blood transfusions. Paras Cancer Centre, Patna is the only hospital in Bihar to provide comprehensive bone marrow transplant for thalssemia, aplastic anemia, leukemia, lymphoma and neuroblastoma , to list a few. Over the years the institute has recorded a high success rate and exceptional patient feedback. Paras Cancer Centre is also the only cancer hospital in Bihar & Jharkhand to provide comprehensive cancer care facility – PET CT, Nuclear Medicine, Chemotherapy, Radiation Oncology – LINAC & Brachytherapy, Medical Oncology – Chemotherapy & Surgical Oncology.
Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) for Thalassemia is done through the Hematopoietic Cells. According to Dr Avinash Kumar, Consultant Hemato-Oncology, Paras Cancer Centre, “ BMT for Thalassemia requires that first with chemotherapy we eliminate the thalassemia producing cells in the marrow. We then replace those cells with healthy donor cells from the bone marrow of a healthy donor or from the umbilical cord. The donor cells have to be a human leukocyte antigen (HLA) match. Usually siblings are the best donor as they act as the perfect match. In BMT treatment for Thalassemia, an early treatment and procedure is always recommended.”
Dr Avinash also states, “Patient’s that are receiving the BMT are classified on a number of clinical parameters, These aspects highlight the success rate of the same. Some parameters are – age of the patient, the extent of the chelation needed (the extent of chemo to remove the extra iron from the body), the presence of liver issues, etc. For the success rate the overall Thalassemia free living when the donor was the sibling is recorded as 85-90%. 95% of the patients survive and have a better quality of life post the transplant. We use a number of techniques to counter the issues in bone marrow transplant, such as the use of immunosuppressive therapy to tackle the rejection & the graft vs host disease.”
Latest reports highlight that 1 in 20 people in India suffer from rare blood disorders. The experts said highlight that 80% of rare diseases are hereditarily acquired and in 50 percent of cases, the disease begins during childhood. At present, rare diseases are no longer a rare incidence. The BMT for Thalassemia patients has to be timely, as with time the disorder starts to affect other parts of the boy – heart, bones (causing osteoporosis), liver disease, endocrine complications such as thyroid, diabetes, etc.