Blood and Marrow Transplant (BMT)
Blood and Marrow
Nebu Koshi, MD
Srinivas Devarakonda, MD
Glenn Mills, MD FACP
Amy Bozeman, PA
Cheri Leary, PA
BMT Nurse Coordinator
Carey Tew, BSN, RN, OCN
BMT Unit Manager
Krystal Player, BSN, RN, OCN
BMT Lab Personnel
Tracy Carter, MT, ASCP, Supervisor
Amy Green, MT, ASCP
Jill Comeau, PharmD, BCOP
Breanne Peyton, PharmD
BMT Social Worker
Catherine Laborde, LMSW
The Blood and Marrow Transplant Program at Feist-Weiller Cancer Center at LSU Health Shreveport provides outstanding patient care with a strong commitment to clinical and basic science research. Two forms of hematopoietic blood and marrow transplantation (BMT) are performed at University Health Shreveport that provide maximum care for patients with cancer of the blood and lymph system to treat diseases once thought to be incurable.
The BMT program at Feist-Weiller Cancer Center at LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport began in 1987. Over 680 Blood and Marrow Transplants have been performed to date.
autos (Greek): own, self
Autologous BMT allows patients to receive very high doses of chemotherapy alone, or in combination with radiation therapy to eradicate as many cancer cells as possible. The intensity of high-dose treatments makes the body unable to create new blood cells necessary for survival, as it damages blood-building stem cells in the bone marrow in addition to destroying cancer cells.
Before autologous BMT, blood-forming (hematopoietic) stem cells are collected from the patient's own blood and stored. After treatement, these stem cells are infused back into the patient and allowed to produce normal blood cells. Transplant therapy aims to restore full hematologic and immunologic function following high-dose therapy.
allos (Greek): other, foreign
Allogeneic BMT requires compatible stem cells to be transplanted from a "foreign" or "other" donor. When possible, a donor is located within the family, known as a related donor. If no matching related donor can be found, a donor search is conducted with worldwide databases to find a matching unrelated donor. Once a donor is identified, donor cells are collected. The patient then receives chemotherapy alone or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy in order to prepare for transplant. This is called "conditioning." Shortly after the conditioning ends, the donor stem cells are infused into the patient develop into the full range of blood and immune cells, similar to an autologous BMT.
One purpose of allogeneic BMT is to destroy damaged bone marrow stem cells with chemotherapy and radiation. A second very important purpose is the ability of donor immune cells to actively fight remaining or recurring cancer cells. Your physician works with you to choose the best type of transplant for your particular illness.
In order to be evaluated for a hematopoietic transplant, a referral from the patient’s primary oncologist or hematologist is necessary. Our office will request the appropriate medical record documentation according to the patient’s disease. Once these records are received and reviewed, an appointment will be made with the patient. For questions about this process, please call the BMT office 318.675.5972.
Patients should bring their insurance card, identification, a list of all medications, and a friend or family member. The transplant evaluation usually lasts 2-3 hours while a lot of information is discussed, so it is ideal to have someone present for support.
If you have never been to University Health, you must first register as a patient in Patient Registration, on the first floor of the K-Wing (by the back entrance) of the hospital. You then will report to the BMT clinic on 6K West in the hospital.
If you have been seen at University Health Shreveport, report directly to the BMT clinic on 6K West. During your visit, a physician assistant will get your medical history and perform a physical exam, the nurse coordinator will thoroughly discuss the hematopoietic stem cell process, the social worker will discuss your social needs, and the physician will discuss your disease and the role of hematopoietic stem cell transplant in your treatment.
The decision to have a blood and marrow transplant is difficult because the treatment involves risk. The Feist-Weiller Cancer Center team is here to provide direction and support throughout the transplant process. A blood and marrow transplant is truly a team effort, with you and your primary caregiver being the most important members. Before starting any type of treatment, the patient will meet with Feist-Weiller Cancer Center's transplant physician and other members of the transplant team. If a transplant is right for you, your treatment plan will be individualized based on your medical history and your overall condition.