More young men asked to donate bone marrow
Anthony Nolan said many potential donors of stem cells are held back for fear of what the process entails – even though it is similar to donating blood.
Almost 1,600 people in the UK each bone marrow transplants, the last chance of survival for most as some 70 per cent of patients with blood cancers such as leukaemia or lymphoma cannot find matches through their families.
A survey of more than 2,000 people found 31 per cent worry the process of donating is painful and nine per cent think it will risk their own health. Too few young men are potential donors.
Callum MacDonald-Wood, 25, from Leeds, who donated earlier this year, said: “Donating was a bit like giving blood. It took about four hours but there was no pain. I could have saved someone’s life.”
Ben Pacey, from Doncaster, who had a transplant in 2005, said: “If Anthony Nolan didn’t exist, I wouldn’t exist.
“I owe my donor everything, my whole life.
“You can’t give a greater gift than that and I’d urge people to get on the register to help others who need a transplant.”
People must be aged 18 and 40, weigh more than eight stones and be in good health.
The charity has made enrolling easy – using its www.anthonynolan.org – website.