Banking your baby's cord blood (ep. 34)

Banking your baby's cord blood (ep. 34)

Linda Murray: Another choice to contemplate is whether you'll bank your baby's cord blood. Cord blood banking is a process that allows you to collect and save the blood from your baby's umbilical cord for possible later use in treating disease. Blood from the cord and placenta is different than regular blood; it's a rich source of stem cells, a special type of cell that can grow into tissues, organs, and blood vessels. Stem cells can be used to treat dozens of diseases including some cancers, blood disorders, and immunodeficiencies. Cord blood is collected after delivery and the process doesn't cause any pain or discomfort to you or your baby.

If you want to bank your baby's cord blood, you'll need to decide whether to pay a private bank to store it for your own family's use or to donate it to a public bank for the use of other people in need. It sounds like a great thing to do, so why wouldn't you bank your baby's cord blood? Private banking is expensive, around $1,000 to $2,000 to set up and about $100 a year after that and many people who do it don't end up needing the cord blood. Plus, even if your baby turns out to have a condition that could be helped by cord blood stem cells, that condition would likely be present in the cord blood itself, making it useless. Still, some families want the option of banking the blood just in case or for the use of other family members. The cost is worth it to some families and not to others. Donating to a public bank doesn't cost you anything, but not all hospitals are set up to handle donations.

The American Academy of Pediatrics encourages public donations rather than private banking unless you have another child with a medical condition like leukemia or sickle cell anemia that might be treated through a cord blood transplant.

Watch the video: Unboxing Your Cord Blood Collection Kit. CBR (December 2021).