Be The Match
NATIONAL MARROW DONOR PROGRAM
Every year, more than 14,000 patients get life-threatening diseases that can only be cured with a bone marrow transplant. Seventy percent (70%) of these patients do not have a family member who is a suitable donor, and a donation from a volunteer marrow donor is their only hope for survival. When you join Be The Match, you become part of every patient’s search for a donor.
Marrow is needed to treat patients with leukemia, lymphoma, sickle cell and many other blood diseases.
Since partnering with Be The Match, LifeStream has added more than 49,000 donors to the registry – more than 1,000 donors every year. Since 1988, LifeStream has facilitated more than 240 marrow donations for patients who did not have matching donors in their families.
Ian Aviles Story
Ian’s fighting spirit never left him and thanks to volunteer blood and marrow donations, he is alive today.
Who is Eligible?
With Be The Match®, we are committed to providing the best possible outcomes for patients. That is why Be The Match® focuses on recruiting new registry members ages 18 to 44. This is based on medical research that shows younger donors are best for patients and provide the greatest chance for transplant success. Because of this, doctors request donors in the 18 to 44 age group 85% of the time.
If you are between the ages of 45 and 60 and want to join the bone marrow registry, you can still join but will be asked to make a $100 payment to cover the cost of the initial testing.
How to Register
You can register online at join.bethematch.org/LS or by texting CURE97 to 61474.
After You Complete Registration
When you complete the online registration, Be the Match® will mail you a kit containing cotton swabs, labels, and simple step-by-step directions on how to use and return the kit. The kit will arrive between 3 to 7 days.
If You Are A Match
If you match a patient in need, there are two ways to donate. The patient’s doctor chooses the donation method that is best for the patient.
PBSC (peripheral blood stem cell) donation is a non-surgical, outpatient procedure called apheresis. The donor receives a drug for 5 days prior to donation that increases the number of cells in the bloodstream. The cells are then collected during donation. The donor may experience head or muscle aches that disappear shortly after donation, and are typically back to their normal routine in 1 to 2 days.
Marrow donation is a surgical, outpatient procedure that takes place in a hospital operating room. While the donor is under anesthesia, doctors collect marrow from the back of their pelvic bone. After donation, donors may feel soreness in the lower back. Donors are typically back to their normal routine in 2 to 7 days.
Your Commitment to Patients
Once you join the registry, the most important thing you can do is stay committed. Show your commitment by taking the life-saving pledge:
As a Member of the Be The Match® Registry
I understand that:
- By joining the registry, I am saying I am willing to donate to any patient in need.
- The cheek swab I provide when I join will only be used to add me to the registry. It will not be a donation for a patient.
- I will be listed on the registry until I am 61, unless I inform Be The Match® that I’m unwilling or unable to donate.
If I match a patient:
- I will respond quickly.
- I will be asked to give a blood sample for further testing.
- I will be asked to make a time commitment of 20 to 30 hours over a 4 to 6-week period to attend appointments and donate.
- If I donate peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC), I will receive injections of a drug called filgrastim to increase the number of blood forming cells in my bloodstream.
- If I donate marrow, anesthesia will be used.
For more information on marrow donation or the Be the Match program, call 1.800.879.4484.
“Ian needed blood and marrow for a long time. LifeStream donors were there. They gave our son a chance.
-Jose Aviles, Ian’s father