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Learn About PBSC Donation

Peripheral Blood Stem Cells (PBSC)

In about 80% of cases, donation is sourced from blood stem cells through an outpatient process called apheresis.  This is a blood donation process that takes place in a hospital and takes about 4 hours. Only PBSC donors will be eligible to receive a stipend.


The week of the donation, the donor will receive daily shots of a synthetic protein called Filgrastim (also called neupogen) for four days leading up to the day of donation. Filgrastim increases the number of blood stem cells in the donor’s system.  During the apheresis procedure, the donor’s blood is separated in a centrifuge. The stem cells are retained for the donation and the rest of the blood is returned back to the donor. The donor is awake throughout the procedure. The only discomfort is an IV in each arm.


Possible Side Effects:

Some donors report feeling sore, headaches, or having flu like symptoms while taking Filgrastim. For most donors this passes away within a couple of days and 90% report a full recovery within a week.

Did You Know?


18 to 44 year-olds are requested for donation in more than 90% of cases?

Nothing against older folks, but it has been proven that younger patients provide the greatest chance for a successful transplant. Age guidelines are not meant to be discriminatory. In fact, they are in place for the safety of the patient and our donor.

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