You have probably heard of cord blood banking and are wondering what it is. To better understand this phrase, it is good to split it up a little bit. Cord blood is the blood in the umbilical cord of a baby. The blood contains stem cells which can grow in the blood vessels, tissues and organs. Although the storage of cord blood stem cells is still subject of regulated clinical trials by the FDA, exploring the importance of these cells has helped people with brain injury, autism and a range of other conditions. The specialized cells are being used in the treatment of various diseases.
What is cord blood banking?
Now that you understand what cord blood is and its importance, it is time to look at the cord blood banking. This is a process that involves the collection of the blood that is left in the umbilical cord and placenta of a new born and storing it for medical use in the future. This helps create the cord blood registery.
There are two main options in cord blood storage:
- Donate the cord blood to the public cord blood bank – With this option, the cord blood will be used by anyone who might need it.
- Pay to store the cord blood – This is an option helps you store the perinatal stem cells of your baby. They can be useful in case your child gets sick later in life.
Benefits of cord blood banking
The first point you need to understand about cord blood is that it is a rich source of blood stem cells. The stem cells are what build the blood and immune system. The stem cells can also develop into other types of cells. As a result of this, they can be used to repair blood vessels, organs, tissues and treat a wide range of diseases. When compared to the stem cells found in circulating blood, fat, baby teeth, hair follicles, human embryos, muscles and fetal tissues, the cord blood contains more stem cells.
The stem cells contained in cord blood can be used to treat cancer that has gone into remission. This is considered mostly after cancer treatment fails or the disease recurs. The stem cells in the cord blood can help create a new immune system or blood, thus offering the patient a higher chance of full recovery. Considering the stem cells in cord blood haven’t fully learned how to attack the foreign substances, they match transplant patients more easily compared to the stem cells from other sources. This is one of the key reasons why you should consider having a cord blood registry. It will not only help safeguard the wellbeing of your child but that of your entire family.
Cord blood banking is gaining more popularity across the globe with more people getting cord blood transplants. A minimum of 2,000 cord blood stem cell transplants are done around the world. Yes getting a cord blood registry can be expensive but it can be a life saver in future. This is an option you should consider.