• Mom battling cancer gives birth to twins, finds rare bone marrow donor

    By: Ann Smajstrla, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:

    LOS ANGELES - A California mother who battled leukemia while pregnant found a rare, perfect match bone marrow donor just days before delivering twins.

    Media outlets report 36-year-old Susie Rabaca of Los Angeles gave birth to healthy boy and girl twins Thursday after a trying pregnancy. Rabaca, already a mom to three children, was a few months pregnant when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, an aggressive form of cancer.

    Doctors told her she needed a perfect match bone marrow transplant. Rabaca's mixed heritage -- Latino and Caucasian -- made finding a match difficult. She told KTLA-TV that in a worldwide registry of 30 million donors, none were compatible.

    Rabaca partnered with Be The Match, an organization operated by the National Marrow Donor Program, to share her story and encourage people to register to donate bone marrow. Her story was picked up by media outlets and soon went viral, even garnering a retweet from singer Carrie Underwood.


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    Then, just days before she was set to deliver the twins, Rabaca received good news.

    "I got the call that I had an identified 10 out of 10 perfect match," she told KABC-TV.

    Rabaca will start the transplant process just after Christmas, when she'll undergo and chemotherapy and be isolated from her twins for a month. So the mother of five is trying to enjoy her time with her infants now.

    Rabaca still doesn't know who the potentially life-saving donor is, but told local media she hopes to meet them one day.


     

     

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