Tuesday, March 10, 2015

His story my perspective part 2

Being from a family of 11 children it seems like there wouldn't be a problem finding a perfect match for his bone marrow transplant.  Instead of one sibling matching him he had three siblings to match his bone marrow.  The doctors had to narrow it down to decide which of the matches would be the best between the three.  There are two ways to do a bone marrow transplant from the donor.  My sister's cells were collected by leukapheresis instead of bone marrow harvest.  She received a medication that caused her bone marrow to produce immature stem cells.  These cells would go out into her bloodstream. The doctors would then collect the blood by an IV draw.  The blood would then be filtered and then administered to father Joseph.  After the bone marrow transplant he remained hospitalized receiving various medications to prevent infection and graft versus host disease. Father Joseph had a 30 to 40% chance of graft versus host disease.  He did develop this and subsequently developed the chronic type of graft versus host disease that lasts a lifetime.  His symptoms have included keratoconjunctivitis sicca or dry eyes for which he has to chronically use replenish eyedrops, fatigue, muscle weakness, and mouth sensitivity. He also has joint stiffness and has suffered from scleroderma a tightening of the skin.  Due to the scleroderma he cannot extend his right arm fully.  The most significant symptom he has dealt with throughout all of this is the skin rashes and wounds...

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