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Can We Donate Bone Marrow?
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18 posts in this topic

I'm wondering if celiacs can register as bone marrow or stem cell donors? The websites I've found with general guidelines for who can donate say that people with autoimmune conditions generally can't, but then some of them exempt certain ones. But never mention celiac.

A friend's brother-in-law just died of leukemia and I'd really like to register as a donor in his honor, if I can.

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I'm wondering if celiacs can register as bone marrow or stem cell donors? The websites I've found with general guidelines for who can donate say that people with autoimmune conditions generally can't, but then some of them exempt certain ones. But never mention celiac.

A friend's brother-in-law just died of leukemia and I'd really like to register as a donor in his honor, if I can.

Excellent question! I am in the bone marrow doner registry myself but that was before I was diagnosed as a Celiac. I'm sure, however, if you were called on to donate marrow, they would do another more detailed screening and at that time you could raise the question again. With the amount of attention Celiac disease is now getting in the medical/scientific community I'm sure they will be dealing with that issue soon if they haven't already.

Steve

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I was told that I couldn't donate blood. Is that true? I haven't because I was told that. It was by one of the people that works at the local donation site. I didn't call the HQ or anything because I know her through school and trust her. Now, talking about bone marrow, maybe I can do blood???

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I can't donate anything because of severe anemia, I talked to the guy at the red cross though, and he said that celiacs can donate blood, if they aren't on any medications that are on the "forbidden list".

My husband can't donate because of the meds, he is on for crohns for example.

As far as the bone marrow thing, I don't know, but I think we can. I was going to check it out.

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We can donate blood, and while I don't specifically know about marrow, I suspect we can donate that as well. The difference between celiac and pretty much all the other autoimmune diseases is that the autoimmune trigger (gluten) is known and external to the body. There may be something unique about marrow I'm unaware of, however, that makes this difference a moot point.

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I think in Canada you can't donate blood with celiac disease but in US you can.

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Keep in mind that donating marrow is not a simple procedure, it is a serious operation. People have died. If your health is fragile you shouldn't even consider it.

I wouldn't think about donating unless a blood relative of mine was in need.

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Hmm...this leads me to believe you probably can't:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...4&dopt=Abstract

It is just one study, though.

That would be the sort of difference that would do it. Interesting.

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Hmm...this leads me to believe you probably can't:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...4&dopt=Abstract

It is just one study, though.

The key there may be: "The marrow donor was his HLA-identical sister." The marrow recipient was a close relative who may have also carried the celiac genes. It is generally accepted among celiac experts that one trigger for activating latent celiac disease in adults is significant illness or other major stress. I would think lukemia and a bone marrow transplant would qualify for that.

I was disallowed being a blood doner for years because of elevated liver enzymes. After Celiac dx and going on gluten free diet for a few months the liver enzymes normalized and the blood bank people allowed me to donate once again, with the full knowledge that I was a celiac. This is in USA.

Steve

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I just wanted to add the offical Red Cross response that I received when I asked hem about donating.

No problem whatsoever, Vincent.

Hope we see you soon.

We have recently converted to the Universal American Association of Blood Banking blood donation record, which is completely different than the old record we used to give you.

There is no longer any question that would require you to volunteer that information.

To avoid confusion, or a slow down in the (already lengthy) registration process, I wouldn’t mention it.

If you have further questions, feel free to e-mail.

Have a good day.

Steve Sadler

Problem Management Specialist

Ì American Red Cross

Tennessee Valley Region

2201 Charlotte Avenue

Nashville, TN 37203

' (615) 321-9476

' (800) 253-0957, ext. 8371

mailto:Sadlers@usa.redcross.org

h Together, We Can Save A Life

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I volunteered at the National Bone Marrow Registry Day in my local city spring before last, and was curious if it was on their list, so I asked, and was told at this time celiac is on the "no donate" list. So no at 4/2005 anyway.

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I don't understand why you couldn't donate bone marrow. You have to be an EXACT match to the last HLA allele to donate/receive, right? That means who ever is getting your bone marrow already has the gene for celiac. Or am I way off base?

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I don't understand why you couldn't donate bone marrow. You have to be an EXACT match to the last HLA allele to donate/receive, right? That means who ever is getting your bone marrow already has the gene for celiac. Or am I way off base?

You can't donate bone marrow as it contains a source of stem cells meaning that some of the cells have the potential to become almost any other cell. This means that every stem cell has the protein code for celiacs but can still become practically any cell. Because of this, stem cells are universal. :)

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You can't donate bone marrow as it contains a source of stem cells meaning that some of the cells have the potential to become almost any other cell. This means that every stem cell has the protein code for celiacs but can still become practically any cell. Because of this, stem cells are universal. :)

But how would anyone know whether or not I am celiac since I can no longer be tested for it (and never was)??? And even if I did carry a celiac gene it may never become activated? Do they let DQ2's and DQ8's donate?

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You can't donate bone marrow as it contains a source of stem cells meaning that some of the cells have the potential to become almost any other cell. This means that every stem cell has the protein code for celiacs but can still become practically any cell. Because of this, stem cells are universal. :)

This paragraph makes absolutely no sense.

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This paragraph makes absolutely no sense.

I agree. I wonder if NemmaNoo can provide a source for the claim.

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There is a more recent discussion here. That one includes links to external sources.

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