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Hi everyone,
Following information from UK Government and the publication of NICE guidelines, we have updated our advice on the coronavirus for people who have received or are waiting to receive a stem cell transplant to treat their blood cancer or blood disorder. Read our coronavirus guidance here: www.anthonynolan.org/coronavirus

GVHD and physical contact

Good morning,
My husband is being treated for GVHD following a haplo transplant. Should we avoid kissing? Sorry if this has been asked before. Thank you.

Best Answer

  • Hi Ali,

    Thanks for posting on the forum. In general I would say no you do not need to avoid kissing, physical contact is an important part of our lives and I think our patients can feel isolated enough without being worried about kissing their loved ones. As with all aspects of recovery post transplant, infection is a big concern so the most important thing is that he doesn't kiss anyone that has an infection or is worried they are coming down with an infection. Especially at this time of year when there are lost of coughs and colds around. In regard to his GvHD, it shouldn't make a difference other than if he will be on immunosuppression so again as long as he avoids people with any infections.

    I would always suggest that you discuss this with your transplant team to get their advice too. However I do think that as long as you are sensible and ensure he is not exposed to any infection risk and keep kissing and physical contact to immediate family then it will be fine. Feeling close and connected to loved ones is very important during his recovery.

    Please feel free to post any other questions if you have any.

    best wishes


  • Hi Ali,
    Please don't be afraid to ask any question - it doesn't matter if it's been asked before and never worry that it's too minor an issue. It's what this online community is here for.
    I'm sorry, I don't know the answer to this. The Anthony Nolan staff don't work over the weekend but I know they'll get back to you on Monday.
  • Hi Ali,

    I had skin GvHD for some time so as a result I was on Ciclosporin for an extended period after my transplant until the GvHD had gone. It didn't stop me kissing my wife and as Hayley has said it's important to us patients that things are as normal as possible, including showing tenderness towards our loved ones.

    Throughout all of my treatment though I have become more aware of the risk of infection so it is sensible to minimise contact with anyone who has an infection such as a cough or cold so it's a case of being sensible.

    I don't think kissing would affect the GvHD so the risk lies with any infections that might be transmitted during kissing. I hope your husband is doing well and that the GvHD is being treated satisfactorily and gets under control quickly.

    All the best,

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