Have you ever heard about cord blood banking? I’m so excited to be sharing some info on this today because I really see it becoming more common as there is so much research taking place to study how cord blood could be a treatment for various diseases in the future. New research is even looking into cord blood as a potential treatment for autism, which I’ll get to in a little bit!
I’ll be sharing how I first heard about it, how it works, and who you can contact for more information.
How I First Heard About Cord Blood Banking
Pregnancy was a busy time for me. I lost my Father at 11wks pregnant with twins and we moved from Texas to Arizona when I was around 16wks. I then had over a month of trying to find a doctor who would take me on… they either didn’t take my insurance or said I was too far along. Apparently, some OBGYNs don’t take on patients past 20wks… who knew?!
When I finally found a doctor and a hospital I was happy with, it was such a relief. I even had a private tour with a lovely woman at the hospital who was a bank of knowledge about breast pumps, doulas, feeding consultants and cord blood banking. I hadn’t even heard of it before but it sounded pretty exciting. Sadly, in all the mania of unpacking the house, settling in and preparing for the Twins it totally slipped my mind and I never looked further into it.
As regular readers know, I’m all about the geeky science stuff so I’m feeling a bit gutted I didn’t get in on the cord blood banking action! I love the idea of preserving newborn stem cells which otherwise go to waste. All the potential in newborn stem cells really is fascinating!
What is Cord Blood?
Your baby’s umbilical cord is made of tissue and contains blood, both of which are rich sources of powerful stem cells. It is possible to store them long term for future use.
Once the umbilical cord is clamped and cut, the blood within the cord can be quickly collected then stored once you send it to a cord blood bank. Preserving your newborn’s stem cells may give your child or an immediate family member, depending on the condition and other factors, the opportunity to use this resource for current cord blood therapies.*
Current and Potential Future Uses of Stem Cell Therapy
Preserving your newborn’s stem cells may give your child or an immediate family member, depending on the condition and other factors, the opportunity to use this resource for current cord blood therapies. Today, many conditions may be treatable with cord blood as a part of a stem cell transplant, including various cancers and blood, immune and metabolic disorders. The potential of newborn stem cells is truly exciting and new research is looking into future potential therapies, especially in regenerative medicine.*
Results of a Cord Blood Registry (CBR) funded clinical trial led by researchers at Sutter Medical Center, were recently published. The study showed that the use of a child’s own cord blood was safe in children with autism. More research is needed to understand if cord blood may help children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
How to Bank your Baby’s Cord Blood with Cord Blood Registry (CBR)
Cord blood banking is surprisingly simple! First, you enroll with a cord blood banking company like CBR. The company ships you a collection kit which you take with you on the big day and give to your health care provider to perform the collection after your baby is born. You then give the medical courier a call to come picks up your kit and CBR stores your precious cord blood. This video helps explain the process to get set-up.
How to Find Out More
When you enroll with CBR, every family has access to their team of Certified Genetic Counselors, who can discuss your family’s medical history as it relates to newborn stem cells, and educate you on your options to preserve them for your family’s future. They have many options to make it affordable for families, including payment plans or a gift registry option. I love the idea of family and friends contributing toward the cost of preserving newborn stem cells for the future of your family’s health. So sweet and uniquely touching.
They also have their Newborn Possibilities Program® which assists families with a qualifying medical need by covering all costs for preserving their child’s newborn stem cells and storing them for 5 years.
I am truly excited to follow the development of therapies in the field of newborn stem cells. It really is an exciting world we live in!