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Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer CenterVanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center


Your Initial Physician Visit

After your medical records and other pertinent information have been gathered, you will meet with one of the hematologists (a blood disease specialist) at the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program to discuss your treatment. For this evaluation, you should bring:

  • all the prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicines, and herbal or mineral supplements you take
  • a list of your questions, and a tape recorder if you would like to record the discussion for later review
  • and, if possible, a supportive family member or friend with whom you can discuss questions and concerns after the meeting.

Many factors must be considered to determine the best course of treatment for patients with blood diseases. During this initial visit, you and your physician will thoroughly review your diagnosis and discuss the pros and cons of transplantation as a treatment in your particular case. Your physician will discuss with you the results you can expect with transplantation, the risks of the treatment and any alternative choices you might consider.

If you and your physician think transplantation may be the best step for you, your case will then be reviewed within about a week during a new patient conference. This conference allows all our doctors and other professionals to share information, insights and suggestions related to your case.

Once your transplantation is on track, you will be assigned to one of our clinic nurse practitioners. This highly skilled nurse will provide educational and medical support for you throughout the entire pre-transplant process, and often beyond. You will get to know a number of our physicians throughout treatment, since they rotate duties month to month. However, your assigned nurse practitioner will be involved throughout your preparation for transplantation, providing a personal source of support and information if you have any questions or concerns.