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Psychosocial counseling of patients planned for hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation for malignant conditions—practical challenges and solutions from India


1 Department of Medical Oncology, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, India
3 Department of Psychooncology, Cancer Institute (WIA), Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Prasanth Ganesan,
Department of Medical Oncology, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijc.IJC_81_20

Hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation (HSCT) is a life-saving procedure often performed to cure relapsed and difficult-to-treat malignancies. Only a handful of centers in India were initially involved in the delivery of these services. However, in the last decade, more than 100 centers in the private and public domain have started offering transplant services in the country. Moreover, there are funding options, which has opened up this expensive treatment options for economically backward patients. Costs apart, there are multiple social, familial, and emotional challenges faced by these patients. A multidisciplinary support team involving social workers, psychologists, and transplant nurses, besides the treating hematologist/oncologist, is required for the optimum care of these patients. These challenges, in the Indian context, are often unique. Unfortunately, there is limited information and resource available to guide counseling of patients planned for HSCT in India. We conducted a workshop at our center where a panel of experts with experience in dealing with patients undergoing HSCT discussed issues faced by them. These discussions constitute a valuable resource for counseling patients planned for HSCT. They were transcribed by a postgraduate doctor and are summarised here in a case-based format.




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