Monday, June 13, 2011

Be the Match. A Call for Help, Prayers and Love for A Sweet BlogFriend.

It's one thing to read about a a sick baby belonging to a stranger in the blog world. It's another thing when it happens to be the daughter of my very sweet "blogfriend" Lindsey.

 Meet Kate

image courtsey of her beautiful Mama!

Kate, her Mommy and Daddy very recently received devastating news that Kate has a very rare form of bone marrow failure, one that requires a complete Bone Marrow Transplant. You can read all about her diagnosis, Congenital Amegakaryocytic Thrombocytopenia, here. 

As a Hematology/Oncology nurse, this news hit incredibly close to home, as in my previous life, I had worked as a Bone Marrow Transplant Nurse for nearly 5 years. I'm hoping that I can at least be of some support to Kate and her family over the course of their long journey ahead, even if it's miles away and all I can do is just listen, laugh and/or cry with them. 

Here's where you come in, sweet Loyals. Did you know that one of you out there could Be the Match for sweet baby Kate?  

Let me break it down for you. The best bone marrow donor is one's identical sibling. You see, you inherit half of your immunity markers from your mother and half from your father, so each brother and sister who has the same parents as you has a 25% chance of matching you. Therefore, an identical sibling has the greatest chance of being a complete match. 

About 70% of patients who need a bone marrow transplant do not have a match within their family. Therefore, many times the medical team will often turn to The National Marrow Donor Program. 

Per the Be the Match website, "the donor registry includes 9 million volunteers and nearly 145,000 umbilical cord blood units. Every search through the NMDP provides patients with access to more than 16.5 million potential donors and nearly 550,000 cord blood units on U.S. and global registries."

So, here's my question. 

Are you a part of the National Donor Registry? I am. 

Are you willing to step up and help save someone's life? I am.

Here's how you can, too. 
You never know. 
You or you or even you, could be sweet baby Kate's bone marrow match. 

Read here about some of the FAQ's regarding Bone Marrow donation.

In order to join the registry, you'll be asked to fill out an online health survey. You'll also need to order your registration kit and read through some very important materials that will explain to you what is expected of you if, in fact, you are ever called upon to be a bone marrow donor. 

You can read about making The Commitment here. 

Once your kit has arrived, it's a simple swab of the inside of your cheek and off it goes. How easy is that?

I hope you'll help me spread the word about how devastating bone marrow failure can be. I hope you'll join with me in praying for Kate and her family as they begin this fearful journey. I hope you'll join the registry and perhaps one day, be called upon to Be The Match.  

Please add Kate's button to your sidebar and spread the word about Be the Match. 

We're Finally Three

Sorry for the heavy-hearted post this Monday, Loyals!
You're all incredibly awesome and I know you'll understand!
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  1. I've thought about being a Bone Marrow donor for some time now. I'm squeamish about all things needle-y (hence no tattoos and not donating blood since the &$**!@$ phlebotomist broke my tube and turned the donation room into a crime scene.. eeesh) ..but something like this is so much more important.

    Thanks for giving me the final reason to get tested. <3

  2. My company hosted Be the Match and we were all given the free sawb testing, if we signed up. Sending a prayer Kate's way!!

  3. My husband had a bone marrow transplant three years ago, with his brother as a donor. We tell people that these days it's basically the same process as donating platelets--not the painful lumbar punctures that it used to be.

    It's so easy to get on the registry and so life-changing for the folks who don't have a matched family donor. Thanks for spreading the word, for Kate and everyone else who needs a few cells to save their life.

  4. This is such an awesome post and I know it will reach so many people!!! I actually signed up and am waiting for my kit to come in the mail after reading Lindsey's post - it was SO easy to sign up:)

  5. I wish I could be a donor. However, because of my clotting disorder I can't. I am really hoping that by donating Connor's cord blood, he will help someone else in need.

  6. wow. how devestating. We will send our prayers and hope her way, and try to spread awareness. Wish there was more we could do!


  7. I am definitely going to look into this and see what I can do to help! Thanks for sharing this story and Im sending good thoughts and prayers Kate's way!

  8. Hey girl - I'm back - as fate would have it my test kit arrived today so I thought perhaps I'd do a post tomorrow about just how easy it was with some pics of what arrived. Linking to this wonderful post in mine:)


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