Transplant information

Hello All,

So within the next 2 months my Mom will be having her harvesting and then the transplant done. So my questions are for those of you which I would assume are all. Is how much help did you need once you got out of the hospital? What are we really looking at as far as taking care of my Mom? We also have my Grandmother that has dementia that lives with my parents. So we are also taking her care on as well. We have been told she will need help getting in and out of the shower will that be for weeks, months????

Any information that you can give me so my brothers and I can be prepared when taking care of our Mom would be GREAT thank you all!!!


I was always told that everyone is different and everyone reacts differently (not a great deal of help there for you). After the transplant I was in hospital for one month recovering. Once home, in my case, I didn't need any help at all and was going for long walks within days, cycling within weeks and back jogging in about three weeks. I consider myself extremely lucky and am probably at one end of the spectrum. Other comments here will help you probably from people not as fortunate as me.

Wonderful post Andrea!

I will follow this post very closely as I go for the first consultation next Friday


I'm 71 yrs. old, I had a stem cell transplant yr. ago doing well. I live alone with no family at all near by.

My 1st. 2wks were done as out pt. Then I went in hospital for 2wks. Your 1st 2 wks. home someone has to be w/ you all the time. You are very weak, I was quiet nausated, not much of an appetite for few weeks. I was on my own after that. I had a girl come in couple hrs. to do heavy things. I think, state of mind has a lot to do w/ recovery time. I did my own bathing & personal things always. How old is your Mom? She absolutely will not be able to care for your Grandmother. Could you leave Grandmother at care place for dementia for couple wks.? My Church helped out a lot bringing in food, etc. Nausea was my worst thing took couple months to get appetite back to normal. Make sure she has plenty nausea medicine. I had 3 different kinds. Be sure rinse mouth frequently so won't get mouth sores- I got none. My chemo before it made hair fall out. I shaved my head in process. Hair will grow back in couple months- very curly then when cut will go straight again. Hope I helped a little. State of mind helps so much. I was a nurse helped a little.


Thank you all for responding. My Mom's doctor did say she will need care almost 24 hr care when she is home and will def be in the hospital for 3 weeks at least. We are hoping no longer but ya just never know! She is stage 2 so not sure if that plays a role in the transplant and she also has diabetes. She is only 58 years old and so hoping she can bounce back fast like you Ant :) You are an inspiration for being able to jump back into your life so fast. An old friend of mine is finally recovered and doing well from his transplant back in february. But he needed a donor (his twin brother) and I think that set him back a little. Hoping to get this next phase over and get my Mom into remission so we can look to better and brighter days for a long time :) again thank you all. I love being able to get answers from those who have been through it unlike the doctors who just give their opinions and best case scenarios. Best wishes to you Andrea

Hi Andrea -- I was diagnosed with MM Feb 2010 at age 60 -- a bolt from the blue, just like with your mom. After induction therapy I had an autologous stem cell transplant in Sep 2010. The protocol here at UCSD is to keep the patient in the hospital for about two weeks post transplant, so by the time I was allowed to go home, I was puny but able to bathe and handle the basic necessities on my own. Still, you need to have someone on hand in case of emergency -- having my husband and visiting daughter alongside for those first couple of weeks home was a godsend. I would be more than glad to answer any questions you or your mom might have regarding SCT, or any other aspect of this ornery disease -- Charty (Escondido, CA)

Hello everybody,I met my new doctor last Friday,sounded encouraging,until today:(, I feel great and hoped I was in remission so I could put off this dreaded proceedure for as long as possible. blood tests came back and I am stable but not in remission. October or before is the time frame for a stem cell.I am 55 with no other known health issue's so I hope for a quick recovery,I hope by the new year, I carry a heavy load as my entire family depends on me including an 89yr old father in law who lives with us.This has not been a good day as I really feel the weight and feel old.

awesome update Rodney!

Thank you Charty! Sounds like I might not have to worry as much about my Mom as I thought! Which it great but will still need to see and peek in on her everyday when she gets home! She is/was stage II what stage were you, if you dont mind me asking? Not sure how much that effects recovery but guess we will find out soon enough :(


I hope you get some good news soon! I know how you feel as I have my own health issues and have my 8 yr old son to take care of when my husband is at work. Its a lot to worry about and think about everyday. Prayers to you!!!!!!

Hi Andrea,

I was in the hospital for 23 days for my SCT, I live on my own and had a friend stay with me for my first week home. I was still pretty weak and the nausea was not good. I think it is important to have food there for you to eat, at least soup but I had no energy to cook anything .... even today at almost 3 years since I had my transplant, I am just eating for the first time today and it is almost 830pm. I had chemo yesterday and this is the first time today that I felt like eating. I think that everyone goes thru periods of time when the nausea is bad ... the amazing thing is that people comment all the time about how good I look. I ran into someone that did not know that I had MM and she asked why I was using a walker and was shocked when I told her. My best info for you would be to stock the house, fridge and freezer with food that your mom enjoys. Look for the small ice cube / ice cube trays. The ones that fit comfortably in your mouth. I was told that the way that you keep the infections down, especially the ones that start in the membranes of your mouth and go all the way through your digestive system to the rectal area, is to suck on ice cubes. It lowers the temp. of your mouth to a point that the infection does not start. I have had 2 different nurses tell me this directly along with a dr. ... the others just said suck on ice cubes it helps with no explanation. I had a little fridge in my room at the hospital so that I could keep the jellos, milk shakes and smoothies that I liked on hand so that I could get them myself.

My sister put up a Tinkerbell poster that said Believe with pictures of family posted on the board.

I am allergic to latex and it turned out that I was also allergic to the tapes and bandages that they used. I learned the hard way and lost a couple of layers of skin before we decided that barrier cream and paper tape worked best. However, I did get a blood infection, from the germs that went thru the gauze and was delerious for a weekend ... not a good thing, this was my worst ... at the best I was sitting there bored with my laptop, kindle, and blackberry all played out, I just wanted to go home. They are very careful about your blood levels and make sure that you reach a certain level before even considering letting the patient head home. You do look for things to do. I found reading harder on books, Dex, one of the drugs used quite commonly, does at times change your eye vision. When you are not on Dex, the vision does go back to what it was. However, it does change how you can read a book, I had a kindle that I was able to change the font. Also changed it on the laptop.

I know that your question dealt with the what happens when they go home but I felt it important to let you know about some of the things that she might want to be doing while in hospital that would carry on at home as well.

So, as far as having food set up, I would also have some kind of housekeeping set up ... the last thing you feel like doing is cleaning house ... lol and while you are resting up, you seem to notice the dust more. I know the one lady mentioned walking and cycling but that is not really the norm, it does take a little bit to get back to normal. I was out walking with my walker while still in the hospital and cont'd once I got home ... it gives me balance and stability as well as allowing me places to put my purchases while shopping. It also helped to strength the muscles that turned to mush with the melphalin that was administered just prior to SCT.

I hope that this helps a little, all the best to your mom ... if ever she needed you before, she will need you now ... even if you are just there. A Mother's love if you know what I mean, we just need to know that our kids care enough to be there when we need them.


Thank you so much for all the information! It was ALL very helpful. Thank you for giving a lot of information about the stay in the hospital because she will be in there for at least 21 days. Fingers crossed for less time but probably not! We do plan I having her take a lap top and nook with her. She has no other hobbies nor will she probably have the want to do much anyway. Maybe I can try to come up with ideas for her to keep busy while in there. As I will also prepare some small meals for her when she comes home, and get the ice cubes ready as well. As my parents never have them handy. Again Lori thank you for your post it was VERY helpful!!!!