My youngest child turns five in two weeks, but his birth seems like a lifetime ago. I don’t remember much about his birth other than my wife waking me up to tell me it’s time to go to the hospital. While my wife went through labor, I just stood next to her telling her to push, breath or relax. And about a half day later, our fourth child was born. That’s really all I remember. Actually, I do remember a woman not affiliated with the hospital approaching us about banking our newborn’s umbilical cord. She told us his stem cells could be used for important research and someday it could even save our child’s life if he ever needed access to his cord blood. We turned her down for several reasons, but the main reason was because we didn’t know anything about cord blood banking. Looking back on it now, I wished we would’ve banked his cord blood. As the lady told us, it could save his life someday. That’s why I’m now writing this Cord Blood Registry post for Dad Central. Note: I will receive a promotional item to thank me for participating, but the opinions expressed here are mine and I am not obligated to write a positive review.
What is Cord Blood?
Cord blood is a rich source of stem cells. It is considered to be the master cells of the body because they have the ability to create the different types of cells that make up our organs, blood, tissue, and immune system. Newborn stem cells can trigger natural repair processes in the body by reducing inflammation and increasing blood flow to injured or diseased areas. They can also stimulate the growth of new blood vessels and other tissues.
Why Cord Blood is Important
The type of stem cell found in cord blood has been used to treat more than one million people. Cord blood stem cells have been used in the treatment of over 80 conditions in both adults and children. In addition, cord blood stem cells are currently being 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.
Umbilical Cord Blood is Better
Stem cells can be found in places like bone marrow and fat tissue. However, the younger, more flexible stem cells in the body come from a newborn’s umbilical cord blood and tissue. Advantages of newborn stem cells over other sources of stem cells include:
- Your baby will be a perfect match for their own stem cells and may be a match for a sibling or other family member
- Cord blood is rich in potentially life-saving blood and immune cells termed hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs)
- Newborn stem cells are used to treat many life-threatening diseases, including anemia, leukemia and certain other cancers
- HSCs obtained from cord blood offer advantages over adult stem cells derived from other sources like bone marrow or peripheral blood
- Newborn stem cells have the potential to heal serious conditions like brain damage for the child’s own use
- Cord blood is readily available and can be collected easily without risk to the mother or newborn, regardless of vaginal birth or C-section section
- Newborn stem cells are smart and know how to find injured cells and tissue in the body and initiate a healing process
Make a Decision Now
You only have one opportunity to collect and store your child’s newborn stem cells, and that is immediately after birth. If you don’t make a decision before birth, your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue will be discarded as medical waste. If you decide to bank your newborn’s cord blood, a section of the umbilical cord will be collected and stored in the CordCup Container. BTW, did you know that despite the value of newborn cord blood stem cells to a family’s future health, 90% of cord blood is discarded as a by-product of the birth process and goes to medical waste? I think this is because most families, like we were, are unprepared to make a decision at the last minute. That’s why it’s important to do your research now and think about your decision in advance.
Public vs. Private Banking
If you decide to bank your child’s cord blood, you have two options: a private bank or a public bank. If you select to donate to a public cord blood bank, your baby’s cord blood is available to any patient who needs a transplant. This is great for patients who need it, but none of the cord blood is reserved for your family. On the other hand, private family banking offers parents storage of cord blood stem cells for the family’s exclusive access. In order to take advantage of newborn cord blood cells for future disease management, parents must have access to their family’s line of cells, which is only guaranteed through private banking.
Head over to cordbankingbasics.com for more information about cord blood. BTW, progress is being made through federal legislation that will recognize private cord blood banking as a qualified medical expense. Until then, you can get a $200 discount on banking your newborn’s umbilical cord blood with Cord Blood Registry (CBR). The company is dedicated to advancing the clinical application of newborn stem cells by partnering with leading research institutions to establish FDA-regulated clinical trials, requiring CBR processed cord blood, for conditions that have no cure today. They have stored over 500,000 cord blood and cord tissue stem cell units and are the #1 recommended cord blood company by OB/GYNs and expecting parents. The $200 discount expires
February 24th. extended through March 24th