Bone marrow transplantation: graft versus host disease and oral changes

Bone marrow transplantation (BMT) is the therapeutic modality used in the treatment of many benign or malignant, inherited or acquired hematologic diseases. BMT is characterized by the removal of stem cells from the donor, which may be the patient himself (autologous transplant) or another compatible donor (allogeneic transplant), and the infusion of these cells into the patient after a conditioning period. Progenitor cells infused into the bloodstream are implanted in the bone marrow, promoting hematopoietic reconstitution.

The annual frequency of performing BMT with high success rates are growing exponentially due to a greater knowledge of the human histocompatibility system and accurate examinations in the selection of bone marrow donors. However, graft versus host disease (GVHD) still represents one of the most common complications after allogeneic transplant.