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Hello everyone,
Some of you may have received a text message from NHS Coronavirus Service about ‘shielding’ (staying home for 12 weeks). NHS England wants to ensure no-one at high risk of coronavirus misses its vital health advice. As a result, some patients who are not at high risk have also received that text message. Follow the advice of your own transplant team and check our full up-to-date coronavirus guidance here: www.anthonynolan.org/coronavirus.

Did you want to hear from your donor?

Good morning all,

After a bit of general opinion...

After transplant- did you want to hear from your donor?

I know they can write etc after agreed timescales but as the patient did you want to hear from them?

Many thanks for your thoughts

Comments

  • Hi there,

    I wrote a letter to my donor a couple of months after my transplant to thank them for their donation and to let them know I was doing OK. I found out later that the letter hadn't been passed on by the hospital via Anthony Nolan so I sent a second letter via Anthony Nolan.

    I never got a reply, which I accepted as I realise that some donors do wish to remain anonymous after they've done their bit, so to speak. I'd love the opportunity to thank them in person, but I hope that my note of thanks gave them the comfort that they'd helped save my life and I was doing well.

    I don't know anything at all about my donor, male or female, age, location, or anything else. It's strange to think it could be someone I know, or have walked past in the street and that I'm none the wiser, but a part of them is pumping round in my veins. It would be nice to know a little about them if I could, but I respect their wish to remain anonymous.

    Whoever they are, wherever they are and whatever they're doing, I just know I am indebted to them for donating the cells that gave me my life back after the battering that chemotherapy gave me. Those cells kick started my recovery and got me back to where I am today, almost where I was before it all began.

    Steve

    Nhsunnh
  • Hi,
    This is an interesting question. I thought about posting something similar after seeing the tv programme 'This Time Next Year' a few months ago when a young woman did meet her donor. This option is not available to me as I had a double cord blood transpant with units coming from Kazakstan and Slovakia. I'm sure if I had a 'normal' donor I would want to contact them and also if I had donated I would like to find out how the recipient was getting on. However as most donors are young men, perhaps they donate and then put it behind them as they get on with their lives.

    Has anyone reading this had contact with their donor?

    Sue

    Nhsunnh
  • Hi Sue and Steve,

    I sent my donor a card shortly after my transplant and then to say thanks again at my 1 year anniversary. I did get a very nice response to my second card and I am looking forward to being able to share my personal details with my donor at the 2 year mark. My donor was a young Greek woman in her mid-20's.

    Rob.

    Dieseldrinker62Nhsunnh
  • Hi all,

    Shortly after my transplant in 2014, I sent a thank-you letter to my donor (via my CNS at the hospital). A couple of years later I sent another card (via CNS/AN), but did not receive a reply, so thought my donor just wanted to remain anonymous.

    Following an Anthony Nolan education day in London last year, I filled out the form required to contact my donor (for me this was 5 years post SCT). After a short while, Anthony Nolan emailed me with my donors contact details.

    I am now in regular email / WhatsApp communication with my donor and am hoping to fly out to Germany later this year to meet her. :0)

    Regards,
    Neil

    Dieseldrinker62Nhsunnh
  • Thank you all for detailed replies! I think I'll write to the recepient in time for our 1st anniversary.

    As the donor Im certainly not looking for a thanks in any way, but curious to know a bit more about them.

    Maybe they'd like to know about my particular donation process although it took 2 days it was so incredibly positive and then they can share our story to recruit others.

  • Hello. I, too had a stem cell transplant, back in 2015. I wrote a letter of thanks. Unfortunately I relapsed in 2018 and the gentleman concerned was gracious enough to do it again. I wrote a 2nd time and on neither occasion did I get a reply. I accept he may wish to remain anonymous and fully respect that. I just have a niggling concern that he may never have received the letters and not realise just how grateful I am. I have had 5 and a half years extra time thanks to him.....I have enjoyed the arrival of 2 grandchildren in this period and this is, as you will imagine, priceless in itself.
    If I had a suggestion to make , it would be that the transaction is acknowledged. For example, “The donor has received your letter and wishes to remain anonymous.....” that would be so very helpful for me.
    Jane

    MotherAA
  • Hi all.
    My SCT was almost 5.5 years ago now. I wrote briefly to my donor at 100 days and again after about 6 months. Both via my CNS. I received a response to my second letter, which was a very emotional read. However AN told me that the policy of my donor’s country was to never release any personal details, so I will never have the opportunity to know much about them. I now just send a brief postcard to them every New Year (via AN), as I would to a friend. I haven’t had any other correspondence from them, but I’m ok with that. I just hope the postcards are not an intrusion on their life.

    Dieseldrinker62
  • Hi All ,
    I sent a card to my donor via the Consultant at the Hospital before Christmas ,having had my transplant i April and the donor providing a further donation in prep for a booster.
    Is there any way of confirming that the card was forwarded?
    I can understand if no response is forthcoming but would like to know that heartfelt thanks were delivered.

  • Hello DodoGymru, thanks for your post on the Forum. I'm Clare and I work in Patient Services.

    If you email our Donor team: donor@anthonynolan.org with your details, such as your full name, date of birth, date of your transplant and your transplant centre, then they can look into this for you.

    Hope this helps.

    Best wishes,
    Clare

    Dieseldrinker62
  • Hi Everyone. I had my transplant in January 2019 and like many of you I sent a grateful thank you letter afterwards. I have followed it up with Christmas cards but have not heard anything. I understand some donors do not want contact but I would love to be able to thank him in person.

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