Vincent_Pan75 karma2013-07-24 03:14:18 UTC
Hello! Thanks for dropping by. It was a real treat to meet so many of Vicky's family members at the event at UCSF! Please tell everyone I say hello!
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Vincent_Pan36 karma2013-07-24 06:02:44 UTC
This is a really important question. I probably should have brought it up. There was zero cost for me to donate because the program that organizes the match pays for all the medical bills of the donor. In fact, they also paid for related transportation, etc... Which reminds me that another way to support is to financially contribute to some of these organizations. The one that recruited me was www.aadp.org.
Vincent_Pan36 karma2013-07-24 02:34:06 UTC
From what I understand there are two ways that donors can donate. One does not require anesthesia and the other one does. The one that does not is very similar to donating blood for a few days in a row. The one that does is a surgical procedure and that's the one that I did. Basically I arrived at the hospital early in the morning, received anesthesia, and then woke up a few hours later. When I was in high school I had oral surgery once that required general anesthesia and this was just like that -- meaning you don't feel a thing except for the initial needle prick. When I woke up I was groggy for a while but they had basic pain medicine if I wanted it. So in my case, I can honestly say it did not hurt very much at all. I was maybe a little sore for 3 days? But no more than if I had gone to the gym and worked out extra hard. Oh, when I first woke up, my throat did hurt (from the breathing tube, I think) but they gave me some ice cream and lozenges and then that was fine!
Vincent_Pan23 karma2013-07-24 03:00:53 UTC
Hi. I'm glad to hear that your son is a survivor. I was very glad to meet Vicky and her family. The way the donor program works is that both the donor and recipient can remain forever anonymous if they wish. But if both parties want to meet, after a year, contact information is exchanged. It turned out that Vicky lived in the Bay Area not far from where I live so we managed to get together and raise more awareness for other patients. No, I'm not worried about being asked for more help. Though if I did have that concern, I suppose I could have remained anonymous. Thanks for the question!
Vincent_Pan17 karma2013-07-24 02:21:13 UTC
Thank you for doing what you are doing for team Save Ryan. One thing that I've learned from this process is how the donor (me) gets a lot of the praise and attention but how little of the work we (me) actually have to do. Yes, it's true it is our marrow that gets used, but I have actually found it very inspiring to see so many volunteers out trying to find matches, the various organizations who help support the volunteers, the researchers and scientists who are constantly looking for new ways to help patients, and the doctors, nurses, and hospital staff who are involved in the actual procedure and recovery. So on the one hand I know that having a personal story like mine as a donor can help explain things to people, but I also definitely encourage everyone to keep on doing whatever they can to help people in need even after or without registering as a potential donor. Helping people always takes a collective and individual effort, so again, thank you and best wishes to Ryan and your entire team. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help!
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