Your High Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Transplant Consultation

Patient Experience

  • Reference Number: HEY-964/2021
  • Departments: Haematology
  • Last Updated: 30 September 2021


This leaflet has been produced to give you general information about your appointment.  Most of your questions should be answered by this leaflet.  It is not intended to replace the discussion between you and the healthcare team, but may act as a starting point for discussion.   If after reading it you have any concerns or require further explanation, please discuss this with a member of the healthcare team.

What is a haematology transplant appointment?

The Haematology doctor at the hospital at which you have received treatment for your haematological diagnosis has discussed your treatment at the Haematology Multidisciplinary Team Meeting (MDT).  The MDT has considered that you may be suitable for high dose chemotherapy followed by a treatment known as an autologous stem cell transplant (HDT – ASCT). This treatment is delivered as an inpatient on Ward 33 at the Queen’s Centre for Oncology and Haematology, Castle Hill Hospital.

Why do I need a transplant appointment?

The appointment gives you and the Transplant Team at the Queen’s Centre the opportunity to meet each other.  At this appointment we will be able to discuss your diagnosis, the treatment you have already received, your response to treatment and the transplant process.

How do I prepare for the appointment?

The transplant appointment may be quite lengthy and contains a lot of information. We will provide you with contact numbers of the team and written information to take home with you.  Often people find it difficult to remember everything that was discussed or to think of questions they want to ask at the appointment.  Therefore it may be useful to bring a relative or friend with you as support and a “second pair of ears”.

Although we will have received a detailed referral letter from the Haematology Team at your treatment hospital about your diagnosis and treatment, we will also ask you about this at your appointment. It is helpful if you bring a full list of your current medications with you.

What will happen at the appointment?

The appointment will take place at the Outpatient Department in the Queen’s Centre for Oncology and Haematology at Castle Hill Hospital.  The Queen’s Centre is accessed via Entrance 1 of the Hospital.  There is disabled and free car parking in front of the Queen’s Centre; although there are limited spaces. Patient and visitor car parks are available throughout the Castle Hill Hospital site but they will incur a charge.

When you arrive at the Queen’s Centre, please inform the Outpatient Receptionist.  You will be asked to have some blood taken by the phlebotomist (a healthcare worker who takes blood samples).   Although you may have had blood samples taken many times before, it is important for the team to have up-to-date results at this appointment.

You will then be asked to take a seat in the waiting room before you are called in to see the doctor, who will be a member of the Autologous Transplant Team. A Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist whose role it is to provide you with support, information and co-ordinate your treatment and transplant may also be present. The doctor and Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist will explain why you have been referred to the Queen’s Centre and what high dose therapy and stem cell transplant involves. The doctor will take a detailed history of your general health and your treatments to date.

You may have been asked many of the questions before but it is important for us to know what you understand about your diagnosis, your prognosis and your response to any treatment so far.  We will also be interested to hear if you already know anything about high dose chemotherapy and stem cell transplants. A physical examination may be required and the doctor may want to listen to your heart and lungs.  You will not be asked to undress for this examination but you may need to loosen some of your clothes.  As high dose chemotherapy and peripheral blood stem cell transplant involves a lot of intravenous (into the veins) medication and blood tests the doctor may also want to examine your arms and check how accessible your veins are.

The benefits and risks of undergoing high dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplant will be discussed with you at this appointment.  HDT-ASCT is not suitable for everyone who is seen by the team.  If you don’t wish to proceed with this treatment after the appointment, or if the team feels this is not a suitable treatment for you, your care will resume with the Haematology doctor who referred you. If HDT-ASCT is thought to be suitable for you, we may refer you for further investigations; these investigations will be to check the function of your heart and lungs.  If you live on the South Bank of the Humber and find it difficult to travel, we may be able to arrange this for you in Scunthorpe or Grimsby.

What happens next?

At the appointment you will be provided with contact details for Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist and Transplant Coordinator.  If you have any questions about the information you have been given you can contact them with any questions you may have. The doctor will explain when you need to attend the Queen’s Centre for your next appointment.

Should you require further advice on the issues contained within this leaflet, please do not hesitate to contact the Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist Team (01482) 461087

General Advice and Consent

Most of your questions should have been answered by this leaflet, but remember that this is only a starting point for discussion with the healthcare team.

Consent to treatment

Before any doctor, nurse or therapist examines or treats you, they must seek your consent or permission. In order to make a decision, you need to have information from health professionals about the treatment or investigation which is being offered to you. You should always ask them more questions if you do not understand or if you want more information.

The information you receive should be about your condition, the alternatives available to you, and whether it carries risks as well as the benefits. What is important is that your consent is genuine or valid. That means:

  • you must be able to give your consent
  • you must be given enough information to enable you to make a decision
  • you must be acting under your own free will and not under the strong influence of another person

Information about you

We collect and use your information to provide you with care and treatment. As part of your care, information about you will be shared between members of a healthcare team, some of whom you may not meet. Your information may also be used to help train staff, to check the quality of our care, to manage and plan the health service, and to help with research. Wherever possible we use anonymous data.

We may pass on relevant information to other health organisations that provide you with care. All information is treated as strictly confidential and is not given to anyone who does not need it. If you have any concerns please ask your doctor, or the person caring for you.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018 we are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold about you. For further information visit the following page: Confidential Information about You.

If you or your carer needs information about your health and wellbeing and about your care and treatment in a different format, such as large print, braille or audio, due to disability, impairment or sensory loss, please advise a member of staff and this can be arranged.

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