Bone marrow transplant procedure is aimed to save patient lives with such severe malfunctions of blood or immune systems. This intervention is not available in every country. But when it is, the success rate may be higher or lower, depending on whether local clinics have enough experience to perform a procedure. So, many patients — both children and adults — are forced to look for the most effective options worldwide. 

Keep reading the article how much a bone marrow transplant costs globally, what factors affect the price, where you can get a procedure cheaper without outcome worsening, and even book a proper clinic for a BMT procedure.

What Is a Bone Marrow Transplant?

A bone marrow transplant (also referred to as BMT, or stem cell transplant, hematopoietic cell transplantation) is a procedure to replace damaged bone marrow with healthy stem cells. BMT is typically indicated when your own stops or cannot produce a required number of blood cells.

There are 3 types of bone marrow transplants:

  • autologous — a person receives cells taken from own blood; this type is used mainly in patients with leukemia and leukosis if they haven’t affected the bone marrow itself. The transplant is aimed at reviving the body's ability to produce healthy blood cells after chemo- or radiotherapy.
  • allogeneic from a related donor — BMT with the use of bone marrow from a relative donor.
  • allogeneic from an unrelated donor — a patient receives bone marrow from the matched donor through the Bank of Donors. A special blood test can accurately determine the compatibility of a donor and a recipient for transplantation.

Why Is Bone Marrow Transplant Performed?

A bone marrow transplant can be used to:

  • replace a malfunctioned bone marrow with healthy stem cells (typically in case of leukemia, anemia)
  • Replace a bone marrow and enhance it for a normal functioning after high dose of radiation- and chemotherapy.
  • Restore a bone marrow affected as a result of some genetic diseases progress (for instance, Hurler's syndrome and adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD).

Bone marrow procedure overview

Diseases and Conditions Treated by BMT

The bone marrow transplant surgery is performed to treat people of all ages suffering from hematological and autoimmune diseases, in particular, leukemia, thalassemia, lymphoma, anemia, myeloma, and immune deficiency.

Bone Marrow Transplant: Procedure Overview

Each patient within bone marrow procedure should go through such stages:

  • Pre-op medical evaluation
  • Collecting stem cells (own or donor ones)
  • Chemo or/and radiation therapy cycles
  • Procedure itself
  • Post-op follow-up.

Let's consider these conditions more detailed below:

Pre-op medical evaluation

Before a BMT procedure, a patient undergoes medical tests to evaluate general health conditions and some specific indicators. Then a nurse places a catheter in the vein to inject required medications and solutions. 

The price for bone marrow transplants usually includes expenses for pre-op BMT preparation.

Stem cell collection 

The next important step is to collect stem cells for infusion. If we speak about autologous BMT, you will receive special medications to stimulate your own stem cells production for further collection. 

If a patient expects for allogeneic BMT and a donor is found, then doctors gather donor cells.

Chemo or/and radiation therapy cycles

Before bone marrow transplant infusion, a patient undergoes chemo- or radiotherapy to destroy cancer cells if you have cancer diagnosis, suppress the immune system for better adopting new cells. 

Procedure itself

A BMT procedure is absolutely painless, and is similar to the blood transfusion process. A patient stays awake and conscious, no anesthetic solution is needed. New bone marrow bodies are administered through a catheter in the vein.

Post-op follow-up

Once new bone marrow cells reach your body, they travel through the bloodstream, reach a bone marrow and start multiplying. In several weeks, healthy stem cells will reach a required level. 

How Much Does Bone Marrow Cost Worldwide?

The price of a bone marrow transplant differs across the world. Below you can get familiar with the outline demonstrating the BMT price range globally.

Country

Price

Turkey

from $20,000

India

from $15,000

Thailand

from $137,000

Germany

from $197,000

South Korea

from $115,000

Spain

from $72,000

Israel

from $190,000

Great Britain

from $170,000

USA

from $400,000

The price for a stem cell transplant pointed in the table is initial: it may reach, depending on a transplant type, patient health condition, and further toleration of transplant cells.

Autologous vs. Allogeneic Bone Marrow Transplant Types: Price Overview

There are 2 main types of bone marrow transplant known — autologous and allogeneic ones. The cost of autologous BMT is lower compared to allogeneic as far as own patient cells are taken. 

In case of an allogeneic BMT, the significant part of expenses is wasted on analysis to detect the best donor match, so an average cost can be increased by twice. You can compare approximate prices for these 2 type of BMT procedure in the table below:

Country

Autologous BMT price

Allogeneic BMT price

Turkey

from $30,000

from $40,000

India

from $11,000

from $21,000

Germany

$164,000

$275,000

Spain

from $72,000

from $127,000

Thailand

from $137,000

on request

South Korea

from $115,000

on request

Great Britain

from $170,000

from $210,000

USA

from $400,000

from $550,000

TOP Bone Marrow Transplant Centers List

We have collected bone marrow transplant centers located in different countries and estimated high by Bookimed patients:

Turkey

Find the best price  treatment at Anadolu Medical Center in [object Object]
Turkey, Istanbul Anadolu Medical Center
Doctor visit
from $110
Transfer visa translator accommodation
Fine 285 reviews 285 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $110
reviews About Clinic
more details

Find the best price  treatment at Medipol Mega University Hospital in [object Object]
Turkey, Istanbul Medipol Mega University Hospital
Doctor visit
from $100
diagnostic
from $300
Transfer accommodation translator visa
Fine 276 reviews 276 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $100
diagnostic
from $300
reviews About Clinic
more details

Find the best price  treatment at Memorial Şişli Hospital in [object Object]
Turkey, Istanbul Memorial Şişli Hospital
Doctor visit
from $80
Translator accommodation transfer visa
Fine 115 reviews 115 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $80
reviews About Clinic
more details

Find the best price  treatment at Emsey Hospital in [object Object]
Turkey, Istanbul Emsey Hospital
Doctor visit
from $100
Transfer translator visa accommodation
Fine 9 reviews 9 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $100
reviews About Clinic
more details

Germany

Find the best price  treatment at Helios Berlin Buch in [object Object]
Germany, Berlin Helios Berlin Buch
Doctor visit
from $261
Fine 77 reviews 77 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $261
reviews About Clinic
more details

Thailand

Find the best price  treatment at Bumrungrad International Hospital in [object Object]
Thailand, Bangkok Bumrungrad International Hospital
Bone marrow transplantation Price on request
Fine 66 reviews 66 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Bone marrow transplantation Price on request
reviews About Clinic
more details

Italy

Find the best price  treatment at San Raffaele Hospital in [object Object]
Italy, Milan San Raffaele Hospital
Doctor visit
from $324
Transfer visa translator accommodation
Fine 33 reviews 33 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $324
reviews About Clinic
more details

Israel

Find the best price  treatment at Hadassah Medical Center in [object Object]
Israel, Jerusalem Hadassah Medical Center
Doctor visit
from $500
Transfer translator accommodation
Fine 6 reviews 6 reviews Bone marrow transplantation
Doctor visit
from $500
reviews About Clinic
more details

What Do Factors Affect BTM Cost?

As you see, the cost of bone marrow transplant procedure ranges significantly. And literally, a low cost does not mean poor efficacy, and the high one does not guarantee an excellent result. 

Let’s puzzle out why BMT costs range so drastically, and what factors are primary influencers:

Country

The country you are going to have BMT surgery is among top factors that determines the final price of your treatment. The deal is that some countries provide lower price policies for all goods and services, including medical ones. So,medical education and doctors’ fees are lower, too. So, countries with mild price policies are Turkey, India, Poland, Czech Republic, etc. While the USA and the UK, countries with high citizen income, provide medical assistance at a corresponding high level.

BMT type

One more criteria affecting bone marrow transplant cost is its type — autologous or allogeneic ones. For patients, who need allogeneic BMT, doctors will be searching for a donor and wasting time and expenses for matching tests. Plus, it requires efforts and material to collect donor stem cells, transport, and preserve them.

Patient condition

The more severe patient condition is, the longest hospital stay, more medications, and additional therapies are required. Due to this, only your doctor can determine a complete list of medical services needed, with further cost estimation.

What Does BTM Price Contain?

The price is packaged, and it covers:

Please note that this is a preliminary list of the services. It can differ between hospitals and countries. And the price mostly depends on the patient’s necessity in searching for a donor.

What Else Influences the Bone Marrow Price?

The bone marrow transplant cost depends on:

  • The stage of disease
  • Comorbidities and complications if any
  • The pricing policy in the selected country and hospital.

Why Is Bone Marrow Transplant So Expensive?

Type of required BMT

The cost of a bone marrow/stem cell transplant primary depends on the procedure type — autologous (with patient's marrow cells) or allogeneic (with cells, harvested from a donor) with the sequential steps.

In case, a patient requires a donor, a medical team starts a process to find a person with similar genetic markers in the blood for a transplant. It can be a family member or an unrelated donor.

Searching for a donor requires appealing to the donor banks, finding matches and the following testing. Thus, it is a time & money consuming procedure.

The cost of allogeneic transplant from an unrelated donor is twice as expensive as a transplant from a related donor.

It costs almost three times as much as an autologous BMT (in Turkey, for instance).

Patient's age and hospital stay

Transplants are usually more expensive in patients younger than 20 years (considered as pediatric patients) due to more extended in-hospital stay.

For example, pediatric patients have 1.6 times higher average cost of bone marrow transplant and expenses for outpatient care compared with adult recipients. The median total duration of hospitalization was 43 days vs. 30 days according to the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (USA).

In general, the hospital stay takes up to 30 days. The preliminary period before the transplant takes 5-10 days. During the period, a patient takes drugs or receive chemotherapy, and/or radiotherapy to destroy unhealthy cells. This time is called a conditioning regimen.

After a transplant, a patient is vulnerable to infections because of the weak immune system. At the time, transplanted stem cells start to grow and develop, and the person’s immune system is recovering. A patient is put into a special ward with air filters to make sure no microbes or infections get into it.

In case of any post-transplant complications, the discharge is also postponed increasing the total cost of stem cell transplantation.

Bone Marrow Transplant Cost with Insurance

For patients, covered by health insurance, the out-of-pocket costs for a bone marrow transplant typically consist of doctor's fee, lab, and prescription drug copays as well as coinsurance of 10-50% for the procedure. Most health insurance plans cover the total cost completely or partly. It includes preliminary testing, the collection, and delivery of stem cells, the procedure, and post-operative recovery costs. The prices can vary depending on a region and hospital.

Personal expenses associated with bone marrow transplants, such as food and lodging expenses, incurred, when a patient and their family moves to be closer to a transplant center, are not covered by insurance.

Get a BMT cost estimate

FAQ

Is bone marrow transplant successful?

75 to 91.5% patients reach up 1-year survival rate after the procedure. The result depends on the patient's age, and condition, the medical team's professionalism, donor-recipient matching. The outcome is much better the closer donor's profile is to the recipient's needs.

People usually gain excess fat because they do not follow doctor's recommendations and ignore a healthy lifestyle.

What is bone marrow transplant side effects?

The risk of side effects from the infusion is minimal. Fever, low blood pressure, chest pain, cough are among short-term side effects after the procedure. During the rehab after stem cells transplants, a patient can face infections, organ dysfunction, infertility, depression, and some others.

What is bone marrow transplant side effects?

The risk of side effects from the infusion is minimal. Fever, low blood pressure, chest pain, cough are among short-term side effects after the procedure. During the rehab after stem cells transplants, a patient can face infections, organ dysfunction, infertility, depression, and some others.

Who can give bone marrow transplant?

Anyone can be a donor if a person is healthy and has a desire. A person can donate blood cells to a relative or a stranger. In this case, it’s necessary to contact the nearest donor register and find out the details. Each bank has its criteria and procedure for donating. Once you register, your blood samples are compared with those who are seeking treatment. If you match, you'll be asked for a donation. According to the Be The Match Foundation, a chance to become a donor is 1 in 430.

Is bone marrow transplant safe for the donor?

The procedure is safe but can go along with some side effects as a headache, pain in the back or hip, fatigue. Still one should remember that no medical procedure is risk-free.

How does bone marrow transplant work for the donor?

  • There are 2 ways of donating: marrow stem cells or peripheral blood cells (PBSCs). The patient’s treating doctor chooses the way.
    If PBSCs donation: 91% of donors have 1 session. A person is connected to a blood cell separator device via tubes in both arms. The device collects cells from your arm, picks some platelets and white blood cells into a special bag. Afterward, it returns plasma and red blood cells to your body via the other arm.
    If marrow donation: it's a surgical procedure under general anesthesia. A doctor collects marrow from both sides of the donor’s pelvic bone via small incisions. Most donors return home the same day or the next day after the donation.

Can bone marrow transplant change blood type?

Yes, after the allogeneic transplant a recipient’s blood type is changed into the donor's. Healthy blood cells with their own set of antibodies and antigens replace the damaged cells with their sets. The complete replacement takes 4-6 weeks.

Can bone marrow transplant change DNA?

Yes, it can. A person has the allogeneic transplant from an unrelated donor. As the result, donor's genome gets to the recipient's and a person has 2 sets of DNA, not one as usual. This phenomenon is called chimerism.

Takeaways

A bone marrow transplant is the main hope for people with blood cancers and some disorders affected bone marrow. The procedure is associated with physical difficulties, prolonged hospitalization and is quite a pricey one. The hospital should be chosen according to the experience of a transplant team and its heading doctor, hospital’s equipment and services provided. The BMT cost depends on the range of factors, including bone marrow transplant type, the patient’s condition and pricing policy in the country.

The most affordable option can be find in Indian and Turkish hospitals — the prices are explained by the economic growth level in these countries. The most affordable option in Europe is considered Italian hospital while Germany offers the highest prices.

In case you would like to have an appointment in the hospital or need assistance in selecting the right one, submit a request and we will do our best to take care of your medical travel.