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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2009 Jan;43(2):115-9. doi: 10.1038/bmt.2008.307. Epub 2008 Sep 15.

Allogeneic hematopoietic SCT performed in non-HEPA filter rooms: initial experience from a single center in India.

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  • 1Department of Hematology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, India.


In developing countries, it is important to ascertain the safety of performing allogeneic hematopoietic SCT (HSCT) in single rooms without high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. We present our experience of performing 40 such transplants from July 2004 to November 2007. Source of stem cells was peripheral blood in 33, bone marrow in six and combined in one. G-CSF started from day +1. The indications were SAA-18, CML-7, AML-7, ALL-2, myelodysplastic syndrome-2 and thalassemia major-4. The median age was 19 years (range 2.2-46) with 29 male and 11 female participants. Antibacterial and antifungal prophylaxis was administered along with conditioning, and at the onset of fever, systemic antibiotics were started. Antifungal agents were added if fever persisted for 3 days. Median time for neutrophil engraftment was 10 days (range 8-17). Fever occurred in 38 (95%) for a median of 5 days (range 1-38), and blood cultures were positive in seven (17.5%). Systemic antibiotics were used in 95% and antifungals in 57.5% cases. The 30-day mortality was nil, and 100-day mortality was 1 (2.5%). After day 100, there were eight fatalities (20%) due to chronic GVHD-3, relapse-2, graft rejection-2, disseminated tuberculosis and aspergillosis-1. Our experience suggests that allogeneic HSCT can be safely performed in non-HEPA filter rooms in India.

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