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Wednesday, April 26th, 2006

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bone marrow donations..
I appologize for the off-topic post, but knowing what a caring community this is, I thought I would reach out for your help.

A co-worker of mine has a 4 year old son who is very ill with a rare form of lukemia. His best chance for survival is a bone marrow transplant.

There is a bone marrow donation drive happening mothers day weekend, where the testing is free, the location info is below, the woman I spoke with at the San Francisco said they are also accepting blood donations, but it is not necessary to do both... there's no need for an appointment, and you just need to show up and fill out the consent and contact paperwork, and you will be registered in the national directory...

Normally, testing is only free if you are a member of a minority ethnic group, or of a mixed ethnic background... apparently this is because over 50% of the registered donors are white, so the federal government has agreed to fund the testing costs for the under-represented groups...

Bone marrow transplants can help save the lives of cancer patients, especially lukemia and hodgkin's disease, as well as patients with other blood disorders, like aplastic anemia (i know my spelling is way off!) anyways, registering to be a donor does not mean you will be asked to donate, but it the more people that are registered, the easier it will be to find matches for terminally ill patients. from what i can tell, the proceedure is pretty simple, and as long as you are otherwise healthy, the recovering period is only a day or two... it's not surgery, but they use a needle to extract the marrow, which your body will re-generate within a couple of months. your donation would save the life of another person, which is a huge pay off for such a small sacrafice...

anyways, the family of a recent recipent has joined forces with the National Marrow Donor Program ( http://www.marrow.org ) to organize a bone marrow donation drive, in 2 weekends, the drive has locations nationwide, it should take you less than an hour to fill in a questionaire, and depending on the location, give a blood sample, a finger prick, or a cotton swab from the inside of your cheek. Please check this website to find the center closest to you, and register to be a donor.

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