BONE MARROW DONOR’S SHOCK
WHEN DAVID Gould signed up to the Antony Nolan register as a potential bone marrow donor six years ago, he gave it little to no thought. “A friend at university was looking for a donor and the JSoc launched a campaign where we all signed up.”
The campaign was set up to help Alex Samuels, who was diagnosed with Anaplastic Non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2011, when he was a student at the University of Leeds. He needed a bone marrow transplant and his JSoc responded by hosting a drive to test fellow students in the hope that one of them could be a match.
Mr Samuels found a donor, six years passed and Mr Gould forgot he was even registered.
And then two months ago he was contacted to be told that he was a match to someone else.
“I was in total shock,” the 24-year-old says. “I was at work. My phone rang and when I answered they said someone needed my stem cells. They asked me would I still like to donate?
“I went in the next day for tests and when I was deemed fit and healthy they got me to come back in for the procedure.”
On Tuesday the mechanical engineer for Transport for London was recovering at home after donating stem cells.
In preparation for the procedure he had to have four days of injections. “The injections make your body produce more stem cells. It makes you feel like you have the flu but it is not that bad.
“There is a misconception the procedure is really invasive. It isn’t. My mum was more nervous than I was.”
Mr Gould spent five hours attached to a machine which extracts the stem cells, which were then sent to the cancer patient in urgent need.
“I have never met this person before. I don’t know anything about them other than the fact that what I’ve done can save their life,” Mr Gould says.
“It is an amazing feeling. I don’t know for sure, but it is likely the person I helped is Jewish because people are much more likely to find a match
from someone of a similar ethnicity to themselves.
“It feels great. It is what you would want someone to do for you if you needed it.”
Mr Gould, who is originally from Manchester, is thought to be the first student from those at University of Leeds who joined the register to donate.
David Gould donating his stem cells