Give the gift of life this holiday season and consider donating your bone marrow to BeTheMatch. Each year, over 18,000 people are diagnosed with a life-threatening blood condition that could be treated or cured with a blood stem cell transplant. But a majority of those people don’t have a match in their family. This is where these donations come in: given to those affected, it can truly change their world.
4-year-old Nova Solis is one of the people searching for a match after being recently diagnosed with aplastic anemia, reports Gabby Easterwood of KDVR-TV Denver. Her mother, Miranda Skinner, noticed something was wrong when Nova came home from preschool with bruises all over her body. The bruises seemed indiscriminate; they popped up everywhere. Already on alert, Skinner took no chances when Nova developed a nosebleed that wouldn’t stop bleeding for more than half an hour.
Since her diagnosis, Nova’s life has changed. She is no longer able to go to preschool, and her family is frantically searching for some assistance. One challenge in finding a donor is that there are a limited number of Hispanic and Latina donors available in the registry. Some ethnic groups require a donor with the same ethnic background, which means that the registry needs to be diversified for optimal benefit.
About Aplastic Anemia
Aplastic anemia is a rare but serious blood disorder that occurs when the bone marrow and stem cells become damaged. As a result, your bone marrow stops making enough new red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Aplastic anemia can be mild, moderate, or severe. It can develop at any age, develop over time, or present quite suddenly – though it often worsens over time. If you have aplastic anemia, you might experience symptoms such as:
- Bruising or bleeding easily
- Prolonged bleeding from cuts or injuries
- Pallor (pale skin)
- Shortness of breath that worsens with exertion
- Recurrent infections
- Abnormal bleeding from the nose or gums
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
There are treatments for this condition, but it’s important to speak with your care team about which treatment is best for you. Potential treatments include blood transfusions, bone marrow stimulating medicines, immunosuppressants, medicines for infections, and blood or bone marrow stem cell transplants.