Love Hope Strength

Are you ready to become a potential lifesaver? Join the register now

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If you don't live in a country where DKMS operates, you can find your local registry on the World Marrow Donor Association website.


Become a donor

Every 20 minutes, someone is diagnosed with blood cancer. This diagnosis is devastating, and during the coronavirus outbreak, it is even more crucial that we do all we can to offer hope to people with blood cancer and blood disorders. We have seen the numbers of people joining the blood stem cell register decline dramatically in recent times, and now, more than ever before, we need you to sign up. For many, a blood stem cell donation is their best chance of recovery and only 30% of people find a match within their family. This

means the remainder will need to find an anonymous blood stem cell donor, and that could be you.

It costs us £40 to register a new donor on the UK stem cell registry. As a charity, we rely on monetary donations from the public to help cover this cost and greatly appreciate any contribution, no matter how big or small.

If you are unable to register as a potential donor, we would be very grateful if you could consider making a contribution towards the cost of a registration.

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Frequently asked questions

What is blood cancer?

Blood cancer is the term used to cover a number of malignant diseases of the bone marrow or blood-forming system. Because of the cancerous cells, the blood can no longer perform its vital tasks, such as fighting infections, transporting oxygen or stopping bleeding.

Curing blood cancer

Blood cancer patients can often only overcome the disease with the help of a blood stem cell donation from a suitable donor. In fact, in the case of leukaemia and malignant lymphomas, the transfer of healthy blood stem cells is the only chance of a cure.


Leukaemia is the word used to describe a series of diseases in which there is an increase of non-functional white blood cells. Malignant lymphomas are divided into Hodgkin's disease (lymphogranulomatosis) and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (lymphatic leukaemia) according to their different characteristics.

The altering of lymphatic tissue leading to the swelling of the lymph nodes and enlargement of the spleen. Malignant lymphomas are divided according to their different characteristics into Hodgkin's disease (lymphogranulomatosis) and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (lymphatic leukemia), which originate from the lymph nodes.

How does a blood stem cell donation work?

Peripheral blood stem cell collection (PBSC)

In about 90 percent of the cases the stem cells are taken from the bloodstream. The donor is administered the growth factor G-CSF for five days. This drug increases the number of stem cells in the peripheral blood, which are then obtained directly from the blood using a special procedure. The donation takes 3-5 hours on one or two consecutive days. No surgery is necessary, you can usually leave the clinic the same day. This procedure has been used at DKMS since 1996. During the administration of the drug, flu-like symptoms may occur. Long-term side effects are not known according to the current state of research.

Bone marrow donation

In this method, bone marrow (not spinal cord!) is taken from the donor under general anaesthesia using a puncture needle from the iliac crest. Two small incisions in the area of the rear pelvic bone are usually sufficient. The resulting wounds are so small that they only require a few stitches or often no stitches at all and heal quickly. The procedure is performed in the prone position and takes about 60 minutes. With bone marrow donation, the risk is essentially limited to the anaesthetic. About 5 percent of the bone marrow is taken from the iliac crest. Usually, the donor's bone marrow regenerates completely within 2 to 4 weeks. Local wound pain can occur, similar to a contusion. Only in rare cases can there be pain that lasts longer. The stay in hospital can last up to three days in total. In most cases, as a precautionary measure, a sick note is taken for a few days.

The type of withdrawal depends on the health condition of the patient. Of course we try to take your wishes into account. However, depending on the patient's situation, a method may be excluded or preferred for medical reasons. In principle you should be prepared to use both methods.

Am I missing stem cells after the donation?

The body reproduces the blood stem cells within about two weeks. The procedure of donating them is comparable to a blood donation, and does not lead to a permanent loss of stem cells.

How can I change my billing information?

You can send us your new account details simply and easily by e-mail.

Send us a message!

Help us to register even more lifesavers

We’d love it if you could help us to get more people on the register so that everyone who needs a blood stem cell donor can find their match.