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Bone marrow is one of the source of stem cells. Majority of children and patient undergoing Allogenic bone marrow transplant for benign hematological disorders get stem cell from donors bone marrow.

The harvesting procedure is done under general anesthesia in operating room. It involves little risk and minimal discomfort.

Bone marrow is collected from posterior superior iliac spine through harvesting needles. Usually two physician harvest bone marrow from both side, to reduce the collection time and anesthesia time. Several skin punctures on each hip and multiple bone punctures are usually required to extract the requisite amount of bone marrow. There are no surgical incisions or stitches involved – only skin punctures where the needle was inserted.

The amount of bone marrow harvested depends on the size of the patient and the concentration of bone marrow cells in the donor’s blood. Usually we collect 15 – 20 ml/kg (of donor’s weight) bone marrow. While this may sound like a lot, it really only represents about 2% of a person’s bone marrow, which the body replaces in four weeks.

When the effects of anesthesia disappear, donor may feel slight heaviness or pain at harvesting site, which usually get controlled with Acetaminophen (Paracetamol).

For autologous Transplant, the harvested bone marrow will be cryopreserved and stored at a temperature between -80 and -196 degrees centigrade until the day of transplant.


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