Bone Marrow Stem Cell Therapy
Bone marrow stem cell therapy (abbreviated as BMT) is a procedure that “restore[s]stem cells that have been destroyed by high doses of chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy;”it also increases the number of healthy cells, thus increasing the body’s ability to fight foreign cells (such as cancer cells) on its own. This treatment combines two of the body’s strongest natural healers, bone marrow and stem cells, in order to boost the body’s healthy properties, which in turn helps to fight cancer.
Breaking Down Bone Marrow Stem Cell Therapy
In order to explain how Bone Marrow Stem Cell therapy works, and how it can be an extremely effective treatment for cancer patients, it is important to explain each component of the therapy. Firstly, bone marrow is “the spongy tissue inside some of the bones in the body, including the hip and thigh bones.” Bone marrow is uniquely significant because it contains stem cells.
Stem cells are incredibly important in aiding the body’s healing. Stem cells create the three “main types of blood cells: red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.We need all of these types of blood cells to keep us alive. For these blood cells to do their jobs, you need to have enough of each type in your blood.” There are certain situations that can result in us not having enough of certain blood cells; this is a common problem that cancer patients face, especially when undergoing traditional treatments. As such, stem cells must be factored into our treatment plans. A way in which stem cells are best utilized is through bone marrow stem cell therapy.
How BMT Works
Bone Marrow Stem Cell Therapy is a multi-step process that is administered with care by your doctor. Firstly, stem cells are collected from what is known as a bone marrow harvest. This involves “collecting stem cells with a needle placed into the soft center of the bone, the marrow. Most sites used for bone marrow harvesting are located in the hip bones and the sternum. The procedure takes place in the operating room. The donor will be anesthetized during the harvest and will not feel the needle,” or other pain.Then, a cancer patient typically “receives the stem cells through an intravenous (IV) line just like a blood transfusion. This part of the transplant takes 1 to 5 hours,” and is relatively painless.
Bone marrow stem cell therapy can be administered through different kinds of transplants. As explained by John Hopkins Medicine, “the different types of BMT include the following:
Autologous bone marrow transplant. The donor is the patient himself or herself. Stem cells are taken from the patient either by bone marrow harvest or apheresis (a process of collecting peripheral blood stem cells), frozen, and then given back to the patient after intensive treatment. Often the termrescue is used instead of transplant.
Allogeneic bone marrow transplant. The donor shares the same genetic type as the patient. Stem cells are taken either by bone marrow harvest or apheresis from a genetically matched donor, usually a brother or sister.
Your doctor will best know what kind of transplant is most appropriate for you; however, it has been found that bone marrow stem cell therapy is especially beneficial for cancer patients.
How does BMT directly affect cancer patients?
Bone marrow stem cell therapy can be extremely advantageous to those battling cancer. This is because “certain cancers and other diseases keep hematopoietic stem cells from developing normally. If they are not normal, neither are the blood cells that they make. A stem cell transplant gives you new stem cells. The new stem cells can make new, healthy blood cells,” thus stimulating natural processes in your body that can help fight cancer naturally. When you enable and assist your body in its natural healing powers, you don’t need to rely as heavily on chemical solutions that have harsher side effects.
Further, “chemotherapy and radiation therapy generally affect cells that divide rapidly. They are used to treat cancer because cancer cells divide more often than most healthy cells. However, because bone marrow cells also divide frequently, high-dose treatments can severely damage or destroy the patient’s bone marrow. Without healthy bone marrow, the patient is no longer able to make the blood cells needed to carry oxygen, fight infection, and prevent bleeding.” BMT is a solution: it replaces “stem cells destroyed by treatment. The healthy, transplanted stem cells can restore the bone marrow’s ability to produce the blood cells the patient needs.”
How does CMN utilize Bone Marrow Stem Cell Therapy?
CMN Alternative Cancer Treatment has found BMT therapy to be immensely effective in treating patients with a wide variety of illnesses – especially those who are battling cancer. At CMN, our physicians can safely administer this form of therapy and use it as part of our comprehensive approach to patient treatment and wellness. To learn more about how CMN utilizes this therapy, click here.