Bone Marrow Transplantation (BMT) and Management of Neutropenia

Essay by paon December 2008

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IntroductionCancer is a range of more than 200 diseases characterized by uncontrolled and unregulated growth of cells (Brown and Edwards, 2005. 292). Statistics showed that there were 79,545 new cancer cases and 33, 966 deaths due to cancer in Australia in 1997. Based on this figures, it is expected that 1 in 3 men and 1 in 4 women will be directly affected by cancer before the age of 75 (AIHW, 2001, 6). Bone marrow transplantation (BMT) or stem cell transplantation (SCT) has emerged as an effective, lifesaving procedure for a number of malignant and non-malignant cancer which were once thought incurable ( treating some of the solid tumors and hematologic malignancies, BMT has begun to increase the survival rate for some cancer patients (Buchse & Whedon, 1995, 3). In recent years there has been a dramatic increase in the number of BMT and transplant centers. (Brown and Edwards, 2005.

323). Along with these trends, there is increasing demand for oncology nurses to acquire a broader knowledge of cancer. As the future brings major advances in cancer treatment, oncology nurses will continue to face the challenge of cancer through their ability to develop, adapt, and share their ever-increasing body of knowledge and skill (ANA & ONS, 1987, 1-4). This paper will outline the BMT in terms of rationale, types and procedure. Also, management of neutropenia which is a predictable side-effect following BMT, will be discussed from the literature review.

RationaleThe basic concept of BMT underlines the regimens of dose intensity. Higher doses of radiotherapy, and /or chemotherapy may be given (Foster.2005, 2). Ashwanden (1990, 100) described the rationale for BMT: BMT is used to rescue or reconstitute hematologic or immunologic function in case of nonfunctioning, suppressed, or diseased marrow. It is also used to replace or stimulate nonfunctioning...