Many amongst us are already aware that cord blood offers a near magical cure for a number of life threatening diseases and conditions. Cord blood research is producing new breakthroughs nearly everyday and has already changed the lives of thousands of those who have benefited from these techniques. In this cord blood banking article, we look at some basic issues associated with cord blood.
Stem cells have long been known to produce cures that can sometimes be described as miraculous. These cells have the ability to grow into any other form of cell and help the body regenerate and repair itself. Umbilical cord blood, which is collected from the placenta of a baby soon after its birth, is one of the richest sources of stem cells that you can possibly find. Unlike the more traditional bone marrow transplant that is an invasive and painful procedure, collection of stem cellsis painless and safe and has no possibility of harming the baby.
For centuries, midwives have been throwing away the placenta after a birth. Today we know that the blood in the umbilical cord – the umbilical cord blood – is the richest source of stem cells that we can possibly get.
A number of cord blood banks or cord blood registryhave been set up – in both the public and the private domain for umbilical stem cell storage. Typically, parents are informed of the choices they have in the matter when they go in for ante-natal counseling. Parents can choose to either allow the umbilical cord blood to be saved and stored in a private cord blood bank for their future family use, they can donate it to a public bank or to a person who needs it for a cure or simply get it disposed of along with the placenta. When donated at public cord blood banksfor public use, there are no costs of cord blood banking attached. Cord blood preservation for personal use will obviously mean handling and storage charges.
While the individual probability of your needing a cord blood transplant is low, the list of diseases that can be tackled with these methods is growing rapidly. Many parents know or sincerely believe that the future may bring exciting new discoveries in cord blood research that may totally change the outcomes of major diseases like leukemia, cancer and heart disease.
Storing cord blood or cord blood donation is a guaranteed way to be ready for these discoveries.