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Does stem cell transplant help in thalassaemia?

Q: My nephew is 8 years old. He is thalassaemia major and now my sister is expecting her second child and is running the fifth month of pregnancy. She has got the required tests done and has found that the unborn child is thalassaemia minor and will not require to undergo blood transfusions. We have heard of umbilical cord blood stem cell banking. I would like to know whether this would be applicable in my nephew's case? Has there been any successful stem cell transplant for thalassaemia, if yes, can we have the reference of the concerned family.

A:You should get in touch with Department of Haematology, Christian Medical College, Vellore or Department of Haematology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) for stem cell treatment of thalassaemia. You can also contact Thalassemics India to get the requisite information. For HLA Matching Dr. N.K. Mehra, Dept. Anatomy Room No. 75, AIIMS, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi - 110029 Phone : 26588700 / 500 Dr. Mammen Chandy, Prof. & Head of Hematology, Bone Marrow Transplantation Centre, Christian Medical College Hospital, Vellore-632004. Phone : 91-0416-2222102 / 2223603 ext. 2169 Fax : 91-0416-2232035 / 2232054 E-mail : mammen@cmcvellore.ac.in

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