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Sign up to be a bone marrow donor Friday at Dell Children’s

Nicole Villalpando
nvillalpando@statesman.com
Lizzie Tennyson, left, chats with her friend Natasha Wade while having her hair and makeup done backstage at The Dell Children's Medical Center Children’s Blood & Cancer Fashion Show in 2017. Now Tennyson needs a bone marrow transplant. Potential donors can get on the donor registry on Friday at Dell Children’s. [Erika Rich for American-Statesman]

What if there was something in your body that could help another person live? Something that you’re sitting around producing without even thinking about it?

Dell Children’s Medical Center on Friday is hosting a Donor Registry Drive with Be the Match, which registers potential bone marrow donors, and GenCure, which helps collect the donation.

All you have to do is show up from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Dell Children’s, 4900 Barbara Jordan Blvd. A simple swab of your cheek will be taken and you’ll register with Be the Match that you’re a potential donor. Then if you are a match for someone looking for your bone marrow, you’ll be contacted and undergo further screening.

Doctors are looking for people between ages 18-44 who meet the health guidelines.

One of the people looking for a match is Lizzie Tennyson, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2011. She missed eighth grade, 11th grade and half of 12th grade because of cancer treatments. This fall she was expecting to start college at the University of Texas, when she was told her cancer had returned.

At 21, she’s looking for a bone marrow donor, and she’s one of thousands of other people looking for a donor.

Like Tennyson, about 70 percent of the people needing a bone marrow transplant do not have a relative who is a match, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates. That’s about 18,000 people looking for a match.

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