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Our Treatment Approach

The transplant process varies from patient to patient, but generally includes:

  • Initial testing and your first visit – before your first visit, you may need several tests. You will review the results with your transplant physician at your initial consult. You will also meet with a financial coordinator and social worker who can address additional questions you may have.  
  • Treatment plan—You will work closely with a transplant coordinator who will assist in coordinating all aspects of your transplant process. As your transplant approaches, they will finalize your transplant calendar, which will include many of the events below. You and your family/caregivers will also attend an education class that will provide detailed information on the entire transplant process.  
  • Collection—blood stem cells are collected through a process called apheresis. Blood is taken from a vein and circulated through a machine that removes the stem cells and returns remaining blood and plasma back to the patient.
  • Conditioning treatment and transplant—administration of chemotherapy to destroy all of your diseased cells and prepare your marrow for new stem cells. Stem cells are transplanted into the patient; this process is similar to a blood transfusion.
  • Post-Transplant Care
    • Recovery—your transplanted stem cells will begin to create new blood cells. It may take several weeks for your blood counts to recover. Many patients stay in the hospital during this period for increased monitoring and infection prevention.
    • Post-transplant– patients will need to stay a short distance from the hospital for an extended time post-discharge. You will have daily clinic appointments to check for infections and complications and to monitor your recovery. If you do not live locally, our social workers will be happy to work with you to find lodging in Salt Lake City.
    • Survivorship—after transplant, your road to successful long-term recovery relies on close follow-up care by your transplant team.  It is also important for you to understand the physical and emotional effects transplant may have on your body so you can live a healthy life after transplant.


 

"Marty started his treatment in February of 2008, just as the program was getting started at HCI. We were all new to the tandem transplant protocol then, and we've all learned how hard and how all-consuming it can be for patients, caregivers, and family as well as for the team at HCI. To say that the multiple myeloma staff exhibit the highest professional standards understates the day-to-day reality of the treatment they provide. The team members know their jobs. They know what they must do to treat their patients, and they provide that treatment with skill and kindness. They also know how to tell the truth, how to support, how to help carry the burdens in the most difficult times and to celebrate the joys of the myriad successes, small and large, along the way. We have come to trust them to do their best, to have in mind what is best for us, to answer our questions, to accept our decisions, and to stand with us as we confront this vicious disease together. We are deeply grateful." —Melene R. Dodson

 

 
 For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call 801-587-4652