HLA testing made easy
What happens when someone is looking for that perfect HLA match for a patient needing a bone marrow or stem cell transplant? What are my odds of matching?
First Doctors look at siblings because they stand the best chance of matching because they have the same Mother and Father and come from the same “blood pool” if you will.
If they do not find a match there then they go to the National Registries, International Registries and cord blood banks where there are over 22 million people worldwide already signed up to donate for an unrelated person in need.
If they do not find a match there then they go to people of the same ethnic background and extended family members because they normally come for the same ethnic background.
And if there is no match there then they go to the general public.
My way of determining “odds” is that if I know there are 22 million people out there that they have searched in the Registries and did not find a donor and I am one step removed as a cousin then that gives me an idea of what my odds are of matching. However there are some Doctors and Registries that look very closely at first and second cousins. I do not want to discourage you because we have found matches in first and second cousins. They were not full matches but they were good enough to do a transplant when no other donors were found. I also do not want to give you false hope.