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Pre-testing is a series of medical tests that will help confirm if the patient is a candidate for transplantation. The tests provide information about the state of the patient’s disease and organ functions. Tests may include:

  • Blood tests
  • Bone marrow biopsy
  • Lumbar puncture
  • CT scans/MRI scans/PET scans
  • Dental exam
  • Echocardiogram or MUGA (multiple-gated acquisition) scan
  • EKG
  • Pulmonary function test
  • Urinalysis
  • X-rays
  • Psychological evaluation

Patients who may receive bone marrow from allogeneic donors have a blood sample taken to check the Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) to determine compatibility. HLA antigens are proteins found in the outer coating of the cells in your body. Your immune system uses HLA antigens to recognize foreign substances. Each person has a mostly unique set of HLA antigens inherited from their parents. Only identical twins have identical HLA types, but siblings may be matched for major HLA antigens, making them suitable donors. There is a 1 in 4 chance that two siblings will match each other.