Frequently Asked Questions
Registry and matching:
If I join the registry now, will I be added in time to help Nalini?
Does my blood type affect matching?
How can I find out if I have been checked against Nalini?
Why can't I join for free if I'm over 44?
Are there any drives in my city?
How can I find out if I'm already registered? (In the U.S.)
Donating (if you're a match for someone):
Does it hurt? What are the risks?
If I donate, will I have to travel?
Helping Nalini's efforts:
How else can I help?
If you have another question that isn't answered here, email HelpNaliniIndia@gmail.com (if you're in India), or NaliniNeedsYou@gmail.com (everywhere else).
Q: If I join the registry now, will I be added in time to help Nalini?
A:Yes, if you join at one of our in-person drives or use the code "nalini" when joining Be the Match online, processing of your kit will be expedited so that you can find out if you're a match for Nalini. In addition, by being on the registry, you might have the opportunity to help someone else in the future!
Q:Does my blood type affect matching?
A:No, blood type does not affect matching for bone marrow donors. Patients and donors are matched according to HLA typing.
Q:How can I find out if I have been checked against Nalini?
A:Nalini's doctors are regularly searching the registry. If you're a match for Nalini or another patient, you'll get a call! If you registered in the U.S., you can find out if you have been added to the registry yet by calling Be the Match at 1(800)627-7692.
Q:Why can't I join for free if I'm over 44 (in the U.S.)?
A:Unfortunately, National Marrow Donor Program rules and regulations mean that people over 44 are not able to be processed for free. This is because people over 44 are less frequently able to be donors. However, we encourage you to sign up still if you feel you are able to pay the fee - especially if you are South Asian, you could still be the donor for Nalini!
Q:Are there any drives in my city?
A:Please check our calendar for a list of upcoming drives in India and the US. It is updated with new drives regularly. If you don't see a drive near you, here is more information...
...about registering with DATRI in India.
...about registering online in the U.S. and you can mail back the cheek swabs, free of charge, use promo code "nalini" if asked.
...about registering in other countries.
Q:How can I find out if I'm already registered? (In the U.S.)
A:If you have previously given a blood sample or cheek cell sample to be tested for the registry, you do not need to join again. If you are unsure whether you joined in the U.S., you can contact the National Bone Marrow Regsitry at 1 (800) MARROW-2.
Q:Does it hurt? What are the risks?
A:Modern marrow donations are painless and low-risk. Most of the time, donors give stem cells from their blood in a non-surgical outpatient procedure. Sometimes, doctors determine a marrow donation is best for the patient - in that case, the donor is under anesthesia and doesn't feel anything. Learn more about the donation process.
Q:If I donate, will I have to travel?
A:You can donate at a hospital near you - the donor and recipient don't need to be in the same hospital.
Q:How else can I help?
A:You can spread the word to friends, host a drive, or help sponsor kits in India! Encourage your friends to register and learn more. If you can host a drive, get in touch with us and we can set that up for you - we will do almost all the work, so it's really easy! And finally, you can help sponsor kits in India by donating on our website. The money will go directly to funding people to register in India (paying for kits and processing fees), which will help all South Asians looking for a match.