Swab a Cheek

Increasing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Bone Marrow Registry
Swab YOUR cheek –
YOU could save a life


YOUR contribution will be used to:

  • Register life saving donors
  • Educate donors so they are available when someone needs a match
Condition Eligibility
AIDS If you have or are at risk for HIV (AIDS), you cannot become a marrow donor.
Asthma Active asthma is not acceptable. If a donor has not had an episode in five years and is not on medication, he or she is acceptable. Exercise-induced asthma is acceptable.
Back problems Back problems (sprains, strains and aches) are common and may not interfere with a marrow donation. Serious back problems, particularly those requiring surgery or ongoing medical treatment, will be a cause for deferral.
Blood pressure Elevated blood pressure (hypertension) is acceptable if controlled by medication, providing it is not associated with heart disease.
Cancer Cured local skin cancer (only simple basal cell or squamous cell) is acceptable. Cervical cancer in situ is acceptable. All other forms of cancer are unacceptable.
Diabetes Insulin dependent diabetes is not acceptable. Diabetes controlled by diet is acceptable.
Epilepsy More than one seizure in the past year or multiple seizures are not acceptable. Epilepsy controlled with medication, when there has been no more than one seizure in the past year, is acceptable.
Heart disease Prior heart attack, bypass surgery or other heart disease is not acceptable. Mitral valve prolapse that does not require medication or restrictions is acceptable. Irregular heartbeat not requiring medication is acceptable.
Hepatitis History of Hepatitis A is acceptable. Antibody to Hepatitis B core antigen is acceptable. Hepatitis B surface antigen is not acceptable. Hepatitis C antibody is not acceptable. Hepatitis vaccine is acceptable.
Immunizations Immunizations are acceptable, excluding HBIG and investigational vaccines.
Lyme disease Asymptomatic Lyme disease is acceptable if the donor has been treated successfully with antibiotics. Chronic Lyme disease is unacceptable.
Malaria Malaria more than three years ago is acceptable. If the volunteer finished a full course of antimalarial drugs more than six months ago, he or she is acceptable.
Obesity Donors whose Body Mass Index is over 40 will be deferred, as this may present a risk. To calculate your Body Mass Index, use the following calculation:
Organ or tissue transplant Heart, lung, kidney, bone or other organ or tissue transplant recipients are deferred.
Pregnancy Women who are pregnant may be tissue typed, but will be temporarily deferred if called as a potential donor. Marrow cannot be collected at any time during pregnancy.
Sexually transmitted diseases Genital herpes will be evaluated at the time of physical exam, but is usually acceptable.
Tuberculosis Active pulmonary tuberculosis within the last two years is not acceptable.


c/o Gift of Life Bone Marrow Foundation Development Office 800 Yamato Road, Suite #101 Boca Raton, Florida 33431 Phone: 561.982.2919