Program Saving lives for 20 years

video courtesy of Rhonda Hole


When 15-year-old LaTreva Hill met the man who saved her life earlier this year, she embraced him with tears in her eyes. Two years prior to the meeting, Ras ‘Ammar Nsoroma, an artist from Milwaukee, twice donated blood stem cells, which allowed LaTreva to receive the transplants she needed to stay alive and beat cancer.

With nurses, doctors and staff of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders (CCBD) looking on, the reunion at Children’s Medical Center was moving, to say the least. LaTreva is also an artists, so the two connected immediately. We watched as together they painted a beautiful scene on canvas.

In celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Stem Cell Transplant Program in the CCBD, the painting (pictured below) was turned into a t-shirt available in our gift shops at Children’s Medical Center Dallas and Children’s at Legacy  in Plano.

Stem Cell Transplant Program's 20th anniversary

Since 1992, Children’s is the only academic medical center in North Texas that offers stem cell transplants to children with a variety of malignant and non-malignant disorders.

It’s stories like LaTreva’s that exemplify the amazing work the Stem Cell Transplant Program has done for the last 20 years.  Here are just a few more reasons why we are so proud of the program’s anniversary:

  • Since 1992, the program has performed 361 transplants, of which 269 were to treat a childhood cancer diagnosis.
  • The program has performed 25 transplants in 2012 and 11 were for patients diagnosed with cancer.
  • For more than 21 years, Children’s and the Stem Cell Transplant Program have hosted the “Be the Match” bone marrow drive on every Valentine’s Day to advocate for patients that need or will need transplants.
  • In conjunction with UT Southwestern, the Stem Cell Transplant Program is FACT (Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy) accredited.
  • Children’s is the only Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant Center with a dedicated immunologist in North Texas.
  • The recent expansion of Children’s Medical Center provided a new Hematopoietic Transplant Unit with 12 beds, equipped with state-of-the-art equipment.

Want to know more? Visit the program’s website.

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One Response to Program Saving lives for 20 years

  1. Cristy Ecton September 14, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

    I got to know Ras and LaTreva through this meeting, and I continue to be inspired by each of their journeys. Celebrate September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month because people can and do donate their stem cells anonymously with complete selflessness. Celebrate because whether cancer or another disease that requires a stem cell transplant, these patients go through more than one could imagine. LaTreva’s beads represent that journey.

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