Mayo Clinic's approach

Mayo Clinic doctors have extensive experience using bone marrow transplants to treat a variety of conditions, including cancers. Mayo Clinic offers bone marrow transplants for adults and children using the patient's own cells (autologous transplant), cells from a donor (allogeneic transplant) or using cells from an umbilical cord (cord blood transplant).

People who choose Mayo Clinic for their care receive comprehensive, compassionate and personalized attention from doctors and staff who are committed to providing exactly the care they need. In addition, several support groups are offered at Mayo Clinic's campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota.

Teamwork

At Mayo Clinic, doctors who specialize in blood diseases (hematologists) form a multidisciplinary team with other experts to provide personalized, whole-person care to adults and children undergoing bone marrow transplants.

Your transplant team may include hematologists, cancer specialists (oncologists), mental health specialists (psychologists and psychiatrists), a bone marrow transplant scheduling coordinator, transfusion medicine nurses, trained and specialized nurses, physician assistants, social workers, a nurse coordinator, a clinical nurse specialist, a dietitian, pharmacists, a chaplain and a child life specialist for children undergoing bone marrow transplant.

Children and adolescents undergoing bone marrow transplants receive care at the Children's Center at Mayo Clinic's campus in Minnesota. At Mayo Clinic's campus in Arizona, pediatric experts collaborate with the Phoenix Children's Hospital to provide care to young patients. Together the two oversee a single bone marrow transplant program for children. Pediatric patients receive care from Mayo Clinic specialists in Florida through a partnership with Nemours Children's Specialty Care and Wolfson Children's Hospital.

Experience

Mayo Clinic doctors have extensive experience performing bone marrow transplants for adults and children with a variety of cancerous and noncancerous diseases. Each year, around 800 people undergo bone marrow transplants at Mayo Clinic.

The first bone marrow transplant at Mayo Clinic occurred in 1963. Bone marrow transplant procedures are performed by Mayo Clinic doctors in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota.

The long history of bone marrow transplants performed at Mayo Clinic means that doctors are prepared with the knowledge and resources to provide you with expert, personalized care.

Bringing research advances to patient care

Mayo Clinic doctors and scientists are involved in cutting-edge research that allows them to apply the latest advances to patient care.

Innovations include:

  • Haploidentical transplant. This type of transplant uses stem cells from donors who aren't perfect matches. Research is helping doctors understand how to reduce the risk of complications and improve recovery for people whose stem cell donors aren't perfect matches.
  • Reduced-intensity conditioning. Using lower doses of chemotherapy and radiation before a transplant may allow older people and those who aren't healthy enough for conditioning to undergo bone marrow transplants.
  • Cord blood transplant. This type of transplant is done using stored and frozen umbilical cord blood. There are fewer stem cells in cord blood, but those stem cells can grow more blood cells than can those collected from bone marrow. Using cells from cord blood reduces the risk of graft-versus-host disease. Researchers are identifying the best ways to use cord blood for bone marrow transplants and finding new ways to track these cells after transplant.
  • Expanding indications for bone marrow transplant. Researchers are studying ways to use this treatment for a wider variety of conditions, including complicated and rare diseases.
  • New medication options. Mayo Clinic researchers study medications and treatments for people who have had bone marrow transplants, including new medications to help people stay healthy after a bone marrow transplant.
  • Reduced time in the hospital. At Mayo Clinic, some bone marrow transplants are performed as hospital-based outpatient procedures, which reduces the amount of time spent in the hospital.

Nationally recognized expertise

Mayo Clinic bone marrow transplant specialists are respected for their knowledge, experience and expertise.

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and Mayo Clinic in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Ariz., are ranked among the Best Hospitals for cancer by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., is ranked highly performing for cancer by U.S. News & World Report.

Expertise and rankings

Each year, Mayo Clinic doctors diagnose and treat thousands of people who have blood or bone marrow disease, many of whom benefit from bone marrow transplant. Mayo Clinic's Bone Marrow Transplant Program is among the largest in the country.

Mayo Clinic is recognized for excellence in bone marrow transplant by national and international groups:

Learn more about Mayo Clinic's quality rankings.

Volumes and outcomes

Mayo Clinic doctors' experience and integrated team approach results in transplant outcomes that compare favorably with national averages. Teams work with transplant recipients before, during and after surgery to ensure the greatest likelihood of superior results.

Volumes and outcomes are maintained separately for the three Mayo Clinic locations. Taken together or separately, transplant recipients at Mayo Clinic enjoy excellent results.

Eligibility

If your bone marrow stops working or doesn't produce healthy stem cells, you may benefit from a bone marrow transplant. Bone marrow transplants are used to treat people whose stem cells have been damaged by disease or the treatment of a disease, or as a way to have the donor's immune system fight a blood disorder, such as leukemia.

Doctors will determine whether a bone marrow transplant may be safe and beneficial for you. Your treatment team will explain the benefits and risks of a bone marrow transplant.

Your treatment team will also evaluate you to determine whether a bone marrow transplant or an alternative therapy may be the most appropriate treatment option for your condition.

Learn more about bone marrow transplant eligibility at Mayo Clinic.

Locations, travel and lodging

The Village at Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona, offers low-cost housing for transplant patients and their caregivers.

The Gabriel House of Care in Jacksonville, Florida, offers low-cost housing for transplant patients and their caregivers.

The Gift of Life Transplant House in Rochester, Minnesota, offers low-cost housing for transplant patients and their caregivers.

Mayo Clinic has major campuses in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona; Jacksonville, Florida; and Rochester, Minnesota. The Mayo Clinic Health System has dozens of locations in several states.

For more information on visiting Mayo Clinic, choose your location below:

Costs and insurance

Bone marrow transplant costs and insurance information

Mayo Clinic has dedicated transplant financial services representatives and social workers who can assist you with insurance and financial questions regarding your transplant.

Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people. In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. Many insurance companies require you to get preapproval authorization prior to transplant services.

Insurance information

Before your transplant, it's important that you work closely with your insurance company to understand your benefit plan. You'll be responsible for any of your transplant and medical care costs not covered by your insurance company.

You may want to ask your insurance company several questions regarding your transplant expenses, including:

  • What is the specific coverage of my plan? What are my deductibles, coinsurance, copayments, lifetime maximum amount and annual maximum amounts for both medical care and transplant services?
  • Does my plan have a preexisting or waiting period clause? If so, what is the time frame? Can this be waived?
  • Does my plan include pharmacy coverage? If so, will my plan cover my current medications and immunosuppressant medications?
  • Does my plan require any special approvals for evaluation or transplant? How long does the approval process take once submitted to insurance?
  • Does my plan cover my transportation and lodging expenses during my transplant care?
  • Does my current insurance require enrollment in Medicare when eligible?
  • Does my insurance follow Medicare Coordination of Benefits guidelines?
  • How will my current coverage change after enrolling in Medicare? Will my plan become a supplemental or secondary plan?

If your plan is a Medicare supplement, ask questions including:

  • Does my plan follow Medicare guidelines?
  • Does my plan cover Medicare Part A and B deductible and coinsurance?
  • Does my plan have a preexisting or waiting period? If so, what is the time frame?
  • Does my plan offer an option for Medicare Part D coverage?

Other expenses

Please plan for other expenses that may occur related to your transplant, which may include follow-up medical appointments, long-term medications, caregiver expenses, travel, parking, lodging and other expenses.

If you have an allogeneic bone marrow transplant, your donor's transplant-related medical care may be paid by your insurance company.

For international patients

Mayo Clinic has dedicated international patient account representatives who can assist you with questions regarding your costs and insurance. Read more about international financial services.

Case managers

Mayo Clinic financial staff will work closely with your case managers from your insurance company. Your case manager, who is assigned to you, is available to answer questions and calls related to your insurance costs.