What to Expect After Marrow Donation

Side Effects of Donation

You will typically go home the same day of your donation regardless which procedure is chosen. You will donate approximately one to five percent of marrow, which your body will replenish within four to six weeks after donation. There are no negative effects to your health.

For PBSC donors, the filgrastim injection can cause headaches and bone or muscle aches for the days prior to the donation, but these side effects typically disappear after donation. The recovery time after a PBSC donation is typically one to two days.

After a marrow donation, you will feel soreness in your lower back for a few days up to a few weeks. Marrow donors typically resume their normal routine a few days after donation.

Meeting the Recipient

Although the donation is made anonymously, you have the option of communicating with the recipient through letters. You and your recipient can meet one year after your donation if you both agree.

For more information about what to expect after your donation, visit the National Marrow Donor Program website.

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