HPCT vs. Bone Marrow Transplant

A peripheral hematopoietic progenitor cell transplant (HPCT) differs from a bone marrow transplant in that the progenitor cells are collected from the circulating blood. The progenitor cells are “mobilized” (made to move) from the bone marrow into the circulating blood by giving either chemotherapy with a type of growth factor or the growth factor alone.  This collection process can be done in an outpatient setting, with little of no discomfort and recovery is faster than from a bone marrow transplant.  This method of obtaining progenitor cells is gaining in popularity.

With “bone marrow” transplant, the donor has some liquid marrow removed from the iliac crest, the bones near the hip.  Usually this can be done in an outpatient setting.  The donor usually has general anesthesia for this procedure.

The progenitor cell transplantation program of Marshfield Cancer Care and Ministry Saint Joseph’s Hospital/Ministry Health Care performs autologous peripheral HPCTs.  It is an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group approved Transplant Center and was the first in Wisconsin to be accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT).  It also met the requirements for accreditation by the American Association for Blood Banks for Hematopoietic Progenitor Cell Processes.  The program is a participating team member with the Center for International  Blood and Marrow Transplant Registry to evaluate response and survival after transplant.

FACT is a non-profit corporation developed to set standards to inspect and accredit all phases of blood and bone marrow transplantation, including the collection of cells, processing and the actual transplant. As of January 2010, about 175 centers had been accredited out of over 200 performing transplants in the country.  FACT accreditation is going to be a requirement to participate in National Institutes of Health studies and by participating in these studies we can pool data and reach conclusions sooner.

The multidisciplinary team at Marshfield includes the person being treated and family, a program medical director, other transplant and consulting physicians, program manager, case coordinator, blood banking specialists, nurses and nurse practitioners, occupational and physical therapists, spiritual service staff, social workers and dietitians.

You can contact the Transplant Coordinator, Darlene Bortz RN, OCN at 715-387-7980 or Ione Miedema, RN, MSN, AOCN, Transplant Program Manager at 715-387-9871.


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