Finding a Donor for Blood and Bone Marrow Transplant

Contact Information

(608) 265-1700 (clinic)

The Blood and Bone Marrow Transplant program at University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison, Wisconsin has served adult patients since 1981 and pediatric patients since 1982.


If your transplant doctor recommends allogeneic transplant, the next step is to find a suitably matched blood or bone marrow stem cell donor.




About 30 percent of transplant patients will have a matched brother or sister. If you have brothers and/or sisters who have the same mother and father as you, and they are willing to be tested, the transplant coordinator will arrange for a small blood sample to be collected for testing.


National Marrow Donor Registry


If you do not have siblings, or if none of your siblings match you, the transplant coordinator will search the National Marrow Donor program registry for an unrelated donor or, in some cases, umbilical cord blood units. A search for an unrelated donor can take up to three months to complete. Sometimes, the search for an unrelated donor can be a challenge. Unfortunately, not everyone who needs a transplant finds a donor.


Your transplant physician and coordinator will explain the process and keep you informed along the way. You can learn more about the search for a donor on the National Marrow Donor Program website.