Patients receive a bone marrow transplant due to cancer or illnesses in which their bone marrow does not produce enough of the right cells. Patients receive either autologous, allogenic or umbilical cord blood transplants in which healthy stem cells are received after a patient’s own bone marrow is destroyed. Most patients undergo chemotherapy, radiation, or both, prior transplant in order to kill any cancer cells that remain prior to transplant. Chemotherapy, radiation, and the bone marrow transplant itself all may cause the patient to experience symptoms that limit their function and mobility,
such as pain, fever, chills, severe mucositis, bleeding, graft versus host disease, and many others. Children receiving transplant may also have delayed growth. Physical therapy intervention during and after transplant focuses on maintaining strength, mobility, functional independence, and preventing decline in gross motor skills of children.