Welcome to the Blood and Marrow Transplant Unit. We look forward to meeting you when you arrive on the unit.
What to Bring
During your stay, you may find that you'd like to have some of the following items with you:
- A sweater
- A few sets of comfortable clothing (sweats, pajamas, underclothes, socks)
- A scarf, baseball hat, wig, or bandana
- Personal items and toiletries
- An electric razor
- Glasses/sunglasses if you need them
- A favorite pillow or blanket (washed and dried)
- Magazines, books, puzzles
- Movies, computer games
- Favorite pictures or posters to tape to the wall
- Projects, crafts
- Writing paper, address book, stamps
- Telephone numbers—A telephone and local service is available free of charge in each room. You will be able to give your family and friends a phone number that connects directly to your room. If you will need to make long distance phone calls, you can use a calling card or you can call collect. You can purchase long distance calling cards in different dollar amounts at the Cashier’s Office.
We may clean some of the things you bring from home with a disinfectant before we put them in your room.
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When you arrive at the hospital on the day of admission, you will first need to go to the Admitting Office on the first floor. There, you will complete some paperwork, and blood samples may be taken. You might also have a chest x-ray and an EKG before going to the BMT unit.
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When you arrive on the unit, a nurse will greet you and your family and show you to your room. All rooms are private. They are equipped with a special air filter to provide you with protective isolation. The rooms often feel cool because of this air filter system.
As part of this protective isolation, certain items are restricted: Cellular phones and fresh, dried, or silk flower arrangements are not allowed.
Each room is equipped with:
- A TV and CD player/radio
- A private bathroom with a tub or shower
In addition, patients have access to:
- Computers/laptops with Internet connection
- Sony PlayStations
- Exercise equipment — treadmill and recumbent exercise bike
Many of the additional items were made possible by donations.
The bathrooms in the patient rooms are for patients only. Family and friends must use the bathroom in the family room.
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Throughout your hospitalization, good personal hygiene is essential, because you are much more susceptible to infection. Your own bacteria may be a source of infection, so your daily routine includes frequent oral care, a bath or shower, and thorough skin care. Other routine activities include:
- Changing any dressing, such as that on the central line site
- Weighing you
- Drawing blood between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m., so blood cells counts are known early in the morning. This enables the physician to order any blood products needed for the day. It will be necessary to draw blood more frequently at certain stages of your treatment.
- Taking your blood pressure, pulse, and temperature (vital signs), at least twice each nursing shift, and often more frequently when you are taking certain medications.
- Leading you in your established physical activity regime
- Assessing your nutritional status
As your treatment progresses, additional daily activities are added. Your health care team will try to arrange a schedule to fit your needs.
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It is important that your healthcare providers properly identify you during your stay. You will have a hospital identification band that has your name, medical record number, and date of birth. You will notice the members of your health care team checking your identification band prior to giving medications, hanging blood products, drawing labs, or sending you off the unit for tests.
While in the hospital, your risk of falling increases. Here are some of the ways that you can minimize those risks:
- Keep your call button near you at all times.
- Report any spills or objects that are on your floor or impair your ability to move freely around your room.
- Wear footwear with rubber soles.
- Make sure that you have adequate lighting to see, especially at night.
- Be aware that some medications may cause drowsiness. Ask your nurse or patient care technician for assistance if you ever feel lightheaded or dizzy when getting up.
- Keep assistive devices (e.g. walker, cane, glasses, hearing aid) within reach.
- Keep your bed in the lowest position possible and keep the side rails at the top of your bed raised.
- Be aware that equipment in your room such as your IV pole and the bedside table are on wheels and should not be used for support.
- Be careful not to trip over IV tubing when you get out of bed.