Cord Blood Banking – More Options for Expecting Parents
As life-threatening diseases, such as many types of cancer, become more standard, more and more parents are turning to placental and cord blood banking to help them obtain potentially lifesaving treatment options their children may one day need.
Cord blood has been successfully used to treat more than 8,000 patients with some 80 known diseases, including leukemia and other cancers. Today, thousands of patients are searching for appropriate stem cell units, such as those found in cord blood, to treat cancer or blood disorders. Unfortunately, despite 7 million donors on registries around the world, more than 30% of patients requiring stem cell transplants are unable to find a appropriate match. The proportion of unsuccessful searches is already greater among patients not of Northern European descent.
There are two rare ways for parents of a newborn to save stem cells to help them prepare for their family’s possible future health needs. The first is the more traditional method of collecting stem cells from the umbilical cord closest after birth. This noninvasive method is quick and painless for both baby and mother, and may offer parents the peace of mind they seek from having secured treatment options that may one day save their families. The second method of banking is also noninvasive, quick and painless for both baby and mother. It involves collecting placenta-derived stem cells in addition to cord blood stem cells. This procedure increases the total number of stem cells banked and yields two separate stem cell collections, which increases treatment options. For example, if there was a need for stem cells, one collection could potentially be used for the baby and the other for another family member, assuming a appropriate match. Also of importance is the fact that increasing the total number of cells transplanted improves the possible for a successful treatment. Another advantage of collecting placenta-derived stem cells in addition to traditional cord blood banking, is that the placenta is 10X richer in CD34+ cells, which studies show are the cells that matter most for treatment success and survival.
Placental and cord blood banking may become already more valuable in the future with exciting research under way to find new medical uses in areas such as: diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, muscular dystrophy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, and already spinal cord injury. Many parents see placental and cord blood banking as valuable tools to help them obtain potentially lifesaving treatment options their families may some day need.
LifebankUSA is currently the only cord blood banking provider to offer the option to collect stem cells from two of the richest supplies of blood forming stem cells: the placenta and cord blood. For more information, please visit the company’s website.
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