Ocean Springs doctor saves life by donating bone marrow - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Ocean Springs doctor saves life by donating bone marrow

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OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

As an internal medicine specialist at Ocean Springs Hospital, Dr. Clinton Hull is used to saving lives. But a little more than a year ago, he saved a life not by treating the patient, but by donating his bone marrow to the patient.

"This all started when I was in medical school and they had a donor drive as part of a blood donation program they were having and I signed up to be a bone marrow donor at that time," Dr. Hull said.

A decade after registering, Dr. Hull received a surprising call.

"I got a phone call saying I was a match for someone I did not know," Dr. Hull said.

He packed his bags and traveled to The University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, which is the only place in the state that performs bone marrow transplants.

"There were some anxiety I had. It quickly went away," Dr. Hull said.

There are two different ways to donate: One is through aphaeresis where doctors give you two IV's, which circulate your blood until the bone marrow can be taken. This is the easier and less painful method. However, Dr. Hull donated the other way.

"Via biopsy or aspiration, where they actually stick needles into your bone to get the marrow out. There is some pain involved, but you have to think about what the other person is going through to need this type of transfusion to live," Dr. Hull said.

A year after the transplant, if both people agree, donors can find out who received their bone marrow. Dr. Hull just received the paperwork a few weeks ago and is anxious to try and meet his recipient.

"See how their recovery was and what there goals are in the future," Dr. Hull said.

He wants to encourage everyone to register to be a donor. He says it was a very rewarding experience.

"If they need me to do it again, I'll be glad to do it again," Dr. Hull said.

To register as a donor all you have to do is get a swab of your cheek, and you can even do it at home. To register with the national marrow registry, visit http://marrow.org/Join/Join_Now/Join_Now.aspx

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