In first of Vidarbha region, a 68-year-old gentleman from Botswana (South Africa) with multiple
myeloma underwent autologous bone marrow transplantation at the Wockhardt Hospitals, Nagpur. The
treatment was done by Dr. Gunjan Loney and Dr Vishvdeep Khushoo, Consultants- Haemato-oncology
The patient was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma in 2020 and treated with chemotherapy followed by
maintenance therapy at a local hospital in Botswana. He was then offered Bone Marrow Transplant. In
view of no expertise in his country, he decided to get transplanted in India.
He was also diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma of left buccal mucosa in 2007. He had undergone
a surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy in Botswana.
With the disease in control, autologous bone marrow transplantation was done in Wockhardt BMT unit.
“The patient was given a high dose of chemotherapy which wiped out his normal marrow cells and
residual microscopic cancer cells. Infusing his own stem cells helped in cure,” said Dr Gunjan. He was
recovered within 12 days of transplant.
The challenges we thought we would have faced were because of his previous chemotherapy treated
oral cancer and old age. However, it was quite a smooth journey through the transplant process.
Bone Marrow Transplantation is a curative treatment for many blood disorders, including myeloma,
lymphoma, leukemia, aplastic anaemia, thalassemia and sickle cell anemia.
A team effort is required to take care of the patient in a germ-free environment where he/she would
undergo conditioning chemotherapy followed by stem cell infusion. In the next 10 to 14 days, the
patient would be severely immunosuppressed with extremely low blood counts making him or her
suspectible to severe infections and bleeding.
Patients with cancer are supported with chemoports or peripherally inserted central catheter(PICC) lines
to receive painless therapy. With adequate supportive care, most patients undergo transplantation
successfully resulting in the cure of such life-threatening diseases.
Doctors also thanked nursing staff, resident doctors, Transfusion team, Laboratory team and hospital
team including all other supportive departments for their immense support.