Disclosure: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for the Cord Blood Registry. I received promotional item to thank me for my participation.
There will be a number of gifts exchanged this holiday season, but only a few of those may have the power to keep your family’s legacy healthy.
Are you familiar with cord blood banking?
Up until recently I did not know much about it. I heard small things here and there when I was pregnant with Jacob & Tyler but we didn’t know enough about it to actually store their cord blood stem cells. When we we have a third child, preserving his/her cord stem cells is big possibility.
Cord blood stem cells are found in the umbilical cord and have been used in the treatment of more than 80 conditions including certain cancers, blood disorders, immune deficiencies and metabolic disorder. The cord blood stem cells are also being currently evaluated in FDA-regulated clinical trials for their potential regenerative ability in common health issues including autism, cerebral palsy, pediatric stroke and traumatic brain injury.
Like myself, majority of umbilical cords are discarded at birth due to parents not being fully aware of the benefits. No parent ever plans to have a sick child, but being able to possibly save their life because of that added step you did at birth, saving their cord blood, is priceless.
Consider the future: The clinical use of stem cells has grown each year, with new advancements in medicine there is a likelihood that you or a member of your family could benefit from the newborn stem cells you bank.
Know your family history: Does your family currently suffer from an illness or a disease that is currently being studied? Does that illness run in the family. Could cord blood banking could benefit the treatment.
Know your options: Family banking vs. public donation.
- The family banking offers parents storage for cord blood stem cells for the family’s exclusive use. It usually includes a one-time processing fee and annual storage fees but gives parents access to these stem cells if needed. Free family banking is available through Cord Blood Registry for families with a medical need.
- Public donation lets parents donate stem cells at no cost to possibly help someone in need. You may be able to access your donation if needed but there is no guarantee that it will be available to you.
Talk to your doctor: If you are thinking about cord blood banking, discuss it with your physician or childbirth educator. They will help you sort through your options, and if you do decide to cord blood bank they’ll make sure you have everything you need for a smooth collection.
More information is available at Cord Blood Registry.