Five years after stem cell transplant complications, he’s an active teenager

Drew at 2014 Be the Match Walk in NYC. His stem cell donor lives in Germany. “It’s eye-opening to realize how fragile life really is when you’re young.” Drew D’Auteuil certainly knows whereof he speaks. He is a 16-year-old animal-loving, skiing, rowing, volleyball-playing, honor roll student and licensed driver with braces and a shock of red hair. In April 2010, five months after receiving a stem cell transplant to treat the blood disorder severe aplastic anemia, Drew suffered rare, life-threatening complications. One day Drew was biking with a friend near his New Hampshire home, suffering little more than a mild cough. The next day he was in the intensive care unit at Boston Children’s Hospital, intubated because of respiratory failure. Soon other organs were failing, too. Quick action by ICU and transplant clinicians saved the boy’s life. Although the donor stem cells that would replace his failing bone marrow with healthy marrow were engrafting well, Drew developed Idiopathic pneumonitis syndrome (IPS), a dangerous inflammation of the lungs that occasionally arises in transplant patients who receive stem cells from an unrelated donor. “IPS is a very rare but known complication of stem cell transplant, with a high fatality rate,” says Dr. Allison O’Neill, Drew’s pediatric hematologist/oncologist at  Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center. “Drew’s ICU and tr...
Source: Thrive, Children's Hospital Boston - Category: Pediatrics Authors: Tags: All posts Cancer Diseases & conditions Allison O'Neill Aplastic anemia Dana-Farber/ Children's Hospital Cancer Center stem cell transplant Source Type: news

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