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Robin's Return: Huntsman Cancer Institute explains MDS

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Wednesday Good Morning America's Robin Roberts returned to your TV. But it has been a rough road for Robin as she went through a bone marrow transplant fighting Myelodyspastic Syndrome.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Wednesday Good Morning America's Robin Roberts returned to your TV.  But it has been a rough road for Robin as she went through a bone marrow transplant fighting Myelodysplastic Syndrome. 

Nearly seven months ago Robin Roberts made the announcement on Good Morning America, she was very sick.

Roberts told her GMA audience, "I have Myelodysplastic, MDS."

Her treatment for breast cancer years ago attributed to this new problem.

Michael W. Deininger from Huntsman Cancer Institute described MDS, "A disease where the marrow, where all the blood cells are made, isn't functioning well."

Dr. Deininger works with cancer patients at huntsman cancer institute, he explained the disease and, in its worst forms, the treatment.

Dr. Deininger said, "You need to get rid of the old marrow and replace it with fresh marrow and a fresh immune system."

A bone marrow transplant.  That is what Robin did.

The transplant itself doesn't take much time, but it does a number on your body.

First doctors destroy your immune system and then add the donation.

Dr. Deiniger said, "That is something we can't do with any drug treatment, as far as we know."

This day patients call their new birth day.

Dr. Deiniger added, "If everything goes well, there is a complete restitution of blood cells."

For Robin, her donor was her big sister Sally Ann, but for most with MDS or anyone getting a bone marrow transplant  the donor is a stranger from the national donation bank.

At huntsman Cancer Institute building a bigger donation bank is a goal for Dr. Denniger, along with working with his current patients to learn more about the disease and how to better fight it.



 
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