About Transplant Recovery
After the transplant
Once a patient has received the transplant and the engraftment process is underway, the recipient is susceptible to infections. The hospital stay helps keep patients in a clean environment until the immune system has reached a stronger level.
Preparing the home
Making the home safe for a patient who has received a transplant is a task that will likely fall to a caregiver or family member. The house must be completely prepared to protect the patient's health and minimize the risk of infection during the recovery period. Both family members and visitors will need to learn the importance of hand washing and food preparation practices, caring for children, pets, plants, and more. This can seem a bit overwhelming, but is important to ensuring a successful recovery.
Being a caregiver is an important responsibility with many facets, and it is important for caregivers to take care of themselves. Those in the caregiver role may be trying to learn new medical information, provide emotional support for the patient, care for children and a home, and go to work all at the same time! Caregivers should not hesitate to ask for – and accept – help.
Due to significant medical achievements in recent decades, survival rates are higher than ever for bone marrow and PBSC transplants. Greater understanding of the human immune system, the ability to look closely at genetic factors, and improved methods of collection and treatment have all made the transplant process more likely to succeed.
The time needed to recover can vary, but transplant recipients can look forward to engaging in more and more activities over time, and returning to a normal daily routine with family and friends.
Many transplant recipients go on to become advocates for bone marrow registries, either by telling their story, or by volunteering. Gift of Life welcomes your support and please call us at any time if you want to join our Volunteer Network.