CDC guidance now recommends that moderately to severely immunocompromised patients receive an additional (third) dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna). If you have undergone anti-cancer therapy in the past year, you are within 1 year of stem cell transplantation or are receiving medications that suppress your immune system, you are encouraged to obtain a third COVID-19 vaccination shot. If you received the Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccination, please consult your doctor regarding next steps. Find vaccination locations here.
If you are within 100 days of a stem cell transplantation, we do not recommend that you receive a COVID-19 vaccination until you are cleared by your care team to do so. If you are currently on a clinical research trial, please contact your clinical research team for more guidance. Please contact your care coordinator if you have additional questions about receiving an additional COVID-19 vaccine shot.
At Medical City Dallas and Medical City Children's Hospital, we offer patients access to blood and bone marrow transplant procedures. As a member of the Sarah Cannon Blood Cancer Network, we are included within a larger organization of cancer care resources.
What is a bone marrow transplant?
A bone marrow transplant, also referred to as a stem cell transplant, is a procedure which restores stem cells that have been destroyed by high doses of chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Through the Medical City Healthcare transplant program, three types of transplants are available:
- Autologous transplant: Patients receive their own stem cells. The patient's stem cells or marrow are collected, frozen and stored. When needed, the stem cells are thawed and infused into the patient. The cells or marrow can be stored for years after freezing. Autologous transplant patients donate their cells prior to the therapy.
- Syngeneic transplant: Patients receive stem cells from their identical twin.
- Allogeneic transplant: Patients receive stem cells or marrow from a donor. The donor could be a sibling or a person who is not related to the patient. Blood tests determine the degree of compatibility between the patient and donor. Allogeneic transplant donors usually donate cells on the day before or the day of transplant.
Prior to the stem cell transplant procedure, patients receive very high doses of chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. The chemotherapy is called "high dose" because the doses are five to 10 times higher than the doses given during standard chemotherapy.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy generally affect cells that divide rapidly, thus targeting cancer cells. After the therapy is given, the patient is given the donor cells, or transplant, to create a new immune system.
The healthy transplanted stem cells can restore the bone marrow's ability to produce the blood cells needed.
If transplanted stem cells come from an umbilical cord, the cord will arrive in the stem cell laboratory prior to the start of the high dose therapy.
Blood and marrow transplant services for children
At Medical City Children's Hospital, we perform blood and marrow transplants for pediatric patients with leukemia, other types of cancer and blood disorders. We are a leader in stem cell transplant and research, offering the only accredited program in North Texas for pediatric stem cell transplants.
Blood cancer care
Blood or marrow stem cell transplants are also performed for patients with cancer who undergo high doses of radiation therapy. The blood cancers that are able to be treated with a blood or marrow stem cell transplant include lymphoma, myeloma and leukemias.
About Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute
As part of Sarah Cannon, the Cancer Institute of HCA Healthcare, our family of hospitals provides comprehensive cancer services with convenient access to leading-edge therapies for people facing cancer in our communities. From diagnosis to treatment and survivorship care, our oncology expertise ensures you have access to locally trusted care with the support of a globally recognized network.
Have cancer questions? We can help. askSARAH is a dedicated helpline for your cancer-related questions. Our specially trained nurses are available 24/7, and all calls are confidential. Contact askSARAH at (972) 202-8877.