Blood and marrow transplant complications and their treatment

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Learn how complications are treated after a blood and marrow transplant (BMT).

Key points

  • Your child may develop complications after a blood and marrow transplant.
  • In some cases, your child may be moved to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit if they require special monitoring, mechanical help to breathe, very close medical attention.

After your child’s transplant, it takes four to six weeks for the new bone marrow to grow and function as it should. During this time, your child may experience some complications.

If your child develops a complication, it is natural to become anxious and worried. For most patients, the complications will be temporary. Your health care team will do everything possible to get your child through these difficult times and to keep them as comfortable as possible.

Depending on the complication, your child may need to be transferred to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). The PICU is the best place for your child if they need:

  • special monitoring
  • mechanical help to breathe
  • very close medical and nursing attention

The medical and nursing staff will keep you well informed about whether your child is likely to be transferred to the PICU. The transplant physician will continue to work with the intensive care staff to provide the necessary care for your child.

During this time, your child runs the greatest risk of bleeding, or of having infections and other complications. These risks are covered in more detail in this section.

Last updated: January 6th 2010