The HCM City Hospital of Hematology and Blood Transfusion (announces to be the first hospital in Vietnam successfully conducting the transplantation of hematopoietic stem cells from peripheral blood during a press conference. (Photo: baotintuc.vn)

HCM City (VNA)
– The HCM City Hospital of Hematology and Blood Transfusion has become the first hospital in Vietnam to successfully conduct the transplantation of hematopoietic stem cells from peripheral blood.

In May, the hospital received a 25-year-old female patient from the southern province of Ca Mau, who had suffered from juvenile myelomonocytic leukaemia (JMML), a rare blood disorder that occurs in young people, according to the hospital’s director Phu Chi Dung. The only effective treatment for her would be the transplant of hematopoietic stem cells, he said at a press conference on November 16.

The hospital was not able to find a related donor that has the HLA (Human leukocyte antigen) matching the patient, so it contacted the Tzu Chi Stem Cells Centre in Taiwan (China) to seek a compatible candidate. The centre found a compatible one in July and two months later, the hospital performed the transplant.

The recipient is now on her 57th day after the transplantation and she is in a good condition, Dung noted.

He added that the success marked a medical breakthrough in Vietnam, giving a new hope to local cancer patients unable to find a compatible related donor.

In Vietnam, each stem cell transplant surgery costs about 800 million VND, or 35,200 USD, 60 percent of which can be covered by health insurance. The cost only accounts for one-tenth of that in Singapore and one-fifth in Taiwan.-VNA