10 July 2015
In July 2015, my company had organized a DKMS-BMST stem cell donor drive. When I got to know about the entire procedure and how simple it was,I decided to register. Having lost loved ones to cancer further motivated me. Less than 5 months later, I was informed that I am a potential match for a blood cancer patient. I was nervous at the beginning as the thought of potentially being able to give a new lease of life to any person was in itself overwhelming. The thought of going through medical assessments and the procedure was making me equally nervous.
I spoke to my family and they were very proud and happy that I was potentially going to save a life. DKMS-BMST scheduled a blood draw for the Confirmatory Typing (CT) and after a few days I was confirmed as a perfect match. I started getting my doses of G-CSF injections. I had a dedicated nurse during the entire process who was extremely helpful. On the day of donation, which was scheduled in the beginning of January 2016, I felt like a celebrity when I reached the stem cell collection center, as many people came to see me. I had invited few of my friends as well to pass my time, while I would be donating. The collection process was pretty streamlined and I did not have any difficulty. In fact, I was up and ready for lunch right after the donation procedure.
It was surreal to actually donate my blood stem cells to save a life.
To this day, all I know is that my blood stem cells possibly saved the life of a young child from India. I am very glad that I made the decision to donate. I would recommend everyone to register as a stem cell donor. Give yourself a chance to feel special as you have less than 1% chance of ever being a match. And when that happens, in over 6 billion people around the world, you will feel very special!