Your baby’s umbilical cord is made up of what’s known as ‘cord blood’ and ‘cord tissue’. The cord tissue and the blood inside it contain a rich source of stem cells that can help repair and heal the body.
What is Cord Blood & Cord Tissue Banking?
After your baby is born, stem cells from the cord blood and tissue can be collected and saved for potential future use. This process is known as banking. If you’re considering banking your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue stem cells, be sure to choose a cord blood bank accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB), like ViaCord.
For information about cord blood banking you may call
ViaCord toll-free at 1-866-384-0476
Why should I bank my baby’s cord blood & cord tissue stem cells?
When you choose to bank your baby’s cord blood & cord tissue, you’re planning for your family’s future health.
Stem cells in cord blood have the ability to help rebuild a healthy immune system damaged by disease. For nearly 30 years they have been used in transplant medicine and can be used in the treatment of nearly 80 different diseases including certain types of cancers, genetic diseases and blood disorders. Even more fascinating, uses for cord blood have grown over the last few years and it’s now being used in clinical trials for autism and cerebral palsy.
Your baby’s cord blood has amazing potential and their cord tissue does too. Like cord blood, cord tissue also has stem cells which are a bit different. Cord tissue stem cells have the unique ability to divide, regenerate, and differentiate into a wide range of other cell types. Researchers are seeing great potential for treatments using cord tissue stem cells in conditions that affect cartilage, muscle and nerves like Parkinson’s, sports injuries, and Type 1 diabetes
Who can use them?
Depending on the condition being treated, cord blood stem cells can be used for the baby it was collected from or for a sibling. Recently we’ve seen many children use their own cord blood in clinical trials in a new area known as regenerative medicine for conditions like Autism and Cerebral Palsy. It’s estimated that 1 in 3 people will benefit from regenerative medicine in their lifetime.
Although there aren’t any current treatments using cord tissue stem cells, the potential is growing. Since 2007, there have been 150 clinical trials using cord tissue stem cells. Researchers are using cord tissue stem cells in potential treatments such as Alzheimer’s, liver fibrosis, and lung cancer. There is also a high likelihood an immediate biological family member could benefit from the baby’s cord tissue stem cells.
How are they collected?
Whether you have a C-section or vaginal delivery, the collection process is non-disruptive to you or your baby. Because the stem cells are collected after the umbilical cord has been cut, there is absolutely no discomfort or danger to your baby, making the process completely safe. Even if you choose delayed cord clamping, you can still do the collection.
The collection process:
- Cord Blood: After your baby is born, your medical professional will clamp and cut the umbilical cord. After thoroughly cleaning the cord, a needle will used to collect the cord blood and insert it into a collection bag.
- Cord Tissue: Once the blood is removed from the umbilical cord, your doctor will cut a segment of the tissue, thoroughly clean it, and place it in a collection cup.
What happens after the collection?
Once the collection is complete, your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue stem cells will be transported to a lab for processing and storage. When researching cord blood banks, be sure to choose a facility accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) for handling, processing and storing stem cells. ViaCord is the only bank to receive AABB accreditation for processing and storing newborn stem cells from both cord blood and cord tissue. Accreditation validates the quality of banking services. To learn more about their special collection, processing and storage methods call 1-866-384-0476.
How much does cord blood and cord tissue banking cost?
There are usually two fees involved in cord blood and cord tissue banking. The first an initial fee that covers enrollment, collection, and storage for the first year. The second is an annual storage fee. The initial fee for some cord blood banks may vary depending on the length of storage. Many cord blood banks offer prepaid plans and payment plans.
What if I choose to donate my baby’s cord blood and cord tissue stem cells?
Donating your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue stem cells could make a life changing difference for another family in need. From cord blood foundations to non-profits and medical facilities, there are numerous locations that will collect, process, and use the stem cells from your baby’s cord blood and cord tissue to treat other people. As with any other donation, there is no cost to donate it.
Click here to find a public cord blood donation site in your area.
Where can I get more information about cord blood and cord tissue banking services?
With a little research, you should also be able to locate a credible cord blood and tissue bank online.
Compiled using information from the following sources: