Healthy Moments Episode

Why We Need More African American Donors

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Jul 21, 2014 | Download Audio

Patients needing bone marrow stem cell transplants best match donors of their same racial/ethnic heritage. Dr. Rodgers highlights the need for more African American bone marrow stem cell donors.

Transcript

​Did you know that many African Americans are waiting for a bone marrow transplant and you can help them?
 
Hi, I'm Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at NIH.
 
To match bone marrow donors with patients who need transplants, doctors use a test called HLA tissue typing. A close match between a patient's and donor's tissue type can improve the chances of saving a life.
 
Unfortunately, 70 percent of patients aren’t able to find a matching tissue type in their families. Many people turn to the Be The Match Registry®, where potential donors have signed up. 
 
Patients are most likely to match donors with their same racial or ethnic heritage. So, please consider stepping up and joining the Registry. You may save a life.
 
To learn how to join the Be The Match Registry®, follow us on Twitter @HealthyMoments​. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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