Skip to Content

Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Harvesting


  • Stem cells are important cells because they can divide and change into many different types of cells that your body needs. Blood stem cells can be used to treat certain types of cancer and other diseases. Peripheral blood stem cell harvesting is a procedure that removes stem cells from your blood. You will be connected to a machine by tubes that enter your blood vessels. Your blood will run through this machine and back into your body. During this process, your stem cells will be pulled out of the blood.
  • After harvesting the stem cells, they can be put back into your body or given to someone else. When your healthy stem cells are given to a person with a disease, they will become more healthy and may even be cured of their disease. If your stems cells are being harvested for your own use, you will get treatment for your disease after harvesting. Once this treatment is complete, your stem cells will be put back in your body. Ask your caregiver for more information about stem cell transplant.


Take your medicine as directed.

Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

  • Pain medicine: You may need medicine to take away or decrease pain.
    • Learn how to take your medicine. Ask what medicine and how much you should take. Be sure you know how, when, and how often to take it.
    • Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine. Tell caregivers if your pain does not decrease.
    • Pain medicine can make you dizzy or sleepy. Prevent falls by calling someone when you get out of bed or if you need help.
  • Antinausea medicine: This medicine may be given to calm your stomach and to help prevent vomiting.

Ask for information about where and when to go for follow-up visits:

For continuing care, treatments, or home services, ask for more information.

  • Blood tests are needed during the first couple of weeks after your stem cells are harvested. Ask your caregiver for more information about the tests that you may need after blood stem cell harvesting. Tell caregivers if you are having bone, joint, muscle, or other pain. The medicine injections (shots) that you took before your blood stem cell harvest can cause pain for two weeks or longer.


The peripheral blood stem cell harvest procedure can make you feel tired, but it can also cause you to have problems sleeping. Take more time to rest. Ask your caregiver when you may return to work and your usual activities.


  • You have a fever.
  • You have new or increasing pain in your bones, muscles, or stomach, or your pain lasts longer than 14 days (two weeks).
  • You feel sick to your stomach, or you begin to vomit (throw up).
  • You have new headaches, weakness, or fatigue (tiredness), or these symptoms are getting worse.
  • You feel very anxious (worried).


  • You have severe (very bad) abdominal pain.
  • You have a new tingling feeling around your mouth or fingers, or the feeling is getting worse.
  • You have any new trouble with your breathing after your procedure.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.