A California mother battling leukemia finally gave birth to twins and found a donor match after a long wait. Tens of thousands of people registered to be a donor after she shared her story just weeks ago.
Birth Of Twins
On Thursday, 36-year-old Susie Rabaca finally gave birth to twins Ryan and Rainy. While Rabaca is also a mother to three older children, her pregnancy was a particularly challenging one because she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia early on in her pregnancy.
Rabaca also struggled to find a bone marrow donor because she needed a 100 percent match, and even her sister was just a 50 percent match. In addition, her mixed heritage of Caucasian and Latino made it even more difficult to find a match even with millions of donors already registered
Bone Marrow Donor Search
Rabaca shared her story at the end of November, and she urged more people to register to be donors, whether they get to help many people or just one. Amazingly, a record-breaking number of people registered to potential bone marrow donors because of her story.
About 40,000 people registered in the National Marrow Donor Program, one of whom was a perfect match for Rabaca. Amazingly, the match was found just one week before Rabaca gave birth to her twins.
“Thank you to my family, friends, people around the country that I don’t even know that have shown support and especially that have signed up for BE THE MATCH!!!!! Journey isn’t over but a huge step forward!!!” Rabaca posted on Facebook.
Bone Marrow Donation
Signing up to be a donor can be done in just a few simple steps. One must simply register online and answer a series of questions regarding one’s medical history. The cheek swab kit will arrive by mail in about three to seven days, and with it the potential donor must swab the inside of their cheek and mail it back.
After that, it could take from weeks to even years before the potential donor can be matched with a person in need. During the wait, potential donors must be prepared to be called, as they may be the patient’s only hope for a cure.