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Pediatric Stem Cell Transplant Program

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When it comes to treating childhood cancer, we are recognized as one of the best among children's hospitals, As part of our mission to provide comprehensive care, we perform stem cell transplants to treat some forms of cancer and other blood-related diseases.

Stem cell transplantation is an intensive treatment used for some forms of cancer and other blood-related diseases. It's used to restore the hematopoietic or blood-forming cells that have been destroyed by high doses of chemotherapy and/or radiation.

We perform autologous and allogeneic stem cell transplants, and provide care coordination for patients and families during all phases of the transplant process.

During an autologous transplant, a patient receives his or her own stem cells. This procedure works well for certain types of cancer, like Hodgkin's disease, but is not an option with a cancer like leukemia, where the malignancy involves the blood cells.

Allogeneic stem cell transplants are used for patients with several types of acute and chronic leukemia, as well as inherited immune system disorders and bone marrow failure disorders such as aplastic anemia. The stem cells in an allogeneic transplant come from a match-related donor.

Once a match has been determined, patients undergo a comprehensive pre-transplant evaluation, including lab work, radiology scans and organ function studies.

Donors undergo a medicine regimen to increase the number of stem cells released into the bloodstream by the bone marrow to prepare them for a process called apheresis. Apheresis is similar to dialysis in that the blood is removed from the donor, run through a machine that targets and collects stem cells, and then the rest of the blood is returned to the donor.

When no suitable related donor is available locally, we work with the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) to secure stem cell products from volunteer donors throughout the world.


Contact Stem Cell Transplant Program


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Cancer and Blood Disorders, Akron
Akron Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders
Main Hospital Building
214 West Bowery Street
Akron, Ohio 44308
Fax: 330-543-3220
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Our Doctors/Providers

Department Heads:
Steven Kuerbitz
Steven Kuerbitz, MD

Director, Divisional Research, Shannon E. Wilkes Targeted Therapy Program; The Jeffrey A. Barbour Chair for Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Research and Healing; Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist

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Prasad Bodas, MD

Director, Sickle Cell Program; Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist


Vanisha Patel, MD

Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist


Megan Sampson, MD

Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Program Director; Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist


Stephanie Savelli, MD

Director, Childhood Cancer Survivorship Program and Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program; Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist


Mallory Zehe, PsyD

Pediatric Psychologist

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Nurse Practitioners/Physician Assistants:

Courtney Culbertson, MSN, APRN-CNP

Stem Cell Transplant Program Coordinator; Pediatric Nurse Practitioner; Co-Lead Hematology/Oncology Advance Practice Providers


Some of the Conditions We Treat...

Cancer, leukemia, lymphoma, blood disorders

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