Douglas Mbang donating stem cells

Join the Anthony Nolan stem cell register

Every 14 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer. A stem cell transplant from a stranger – someone like YOU - can be their only hope. Join the stem cell register and you could help save a life.

What’s on this page?

What does Anthony Nolan do? 

How the donation process works 

Ready to make a difference? Joining is quick,
free and easy and you could save a life.

What do I need to know? - Video Recap  

Here are some of the things we think you need to know before joining the stem cell register:

  • You’ll stay on the register until you turn 61. 
  • You could donate to anyone worldwide and it will be anonymous
  • There are two ways you could be asked to donate, and you need to be comfortable with both as doctors decide which is best:  
  • 90% of people donate in a process called peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) collection, which uses a special machine to filter out stem cells from your bloodstream. You’ll receive a course of injections for a few days first, then go into hospital for the collection, which usually takes around 4-5 hours.  
  • 10% of people donate through their bone marrow. The cells are collected from your hip bone. You’re placed under a general anaesthetic throughout. This means you will be unconscious and won’t feel any pain. You’ll stay in hospital for two nights.
  • Joining our register doesn't mean you'll automatically go on to donate your stem cells. In fact, most people wont

Steps for signing up  

So you've heard about who we are, what we do and how you could help save a life. So what are you waiting for?
Joining our stem cell register is quick, free and easy. And it might just save a life!

1. Fill in our online form
Don’t worry, it won’t ask you anything you don’t know. Just basic information like your age, weight, some contact details, and some questions about your medical history.  

We use your answers to check you’re eligible to sign up, and to make sure you’re in good health. We won’t add you to the register if we’re at all concerned that the donation process would be too much for you. Your safety is our top priority!   

Sign up today!

2. Send back your swabs  

Once we have approved your application to join, we’ll send you a swab pack in the post. 

Swabs don’t hurt. They’re a bit like giant cotton buds. Following the instructions that come in the pack, simply move your swab around your mouth. Once you’re done, you just pop it back in the post to us. Easy!

What do our donors say about donating?

Have questions? We have the answers.

If you have any more questions, you can find even more information on our FAQ Page

Other ways to help 

If you don’t join the register – or if you do, but want to do more – there are lots of other ways you can help. You could: 

  • volunteer on our behalf 
  • take part in a fundraising event  
  • like, share and support our campaigns 
  • fund a new donor