Hey Mama, I know you are pregnant and looking to find information about everything, including the newborn's cord blood banking. Guess what? You’ve come to the right place! I understand that this can be an overwhelming decision for new parents, and it’s essential to make sure that you have all of the most relevant knowledge to make an informed decision.
Cord blood banking does bring certain benefits with it, and I am here to explain them to you in easy terms! Ready?
The process involves collecting and storing the blood from your baby's umbilical cord after birth. While it may not be something you've thought of before being pregnant, cord blood banking can offer many benefits for your family in the future.
Let's chat about tips for cord blood banking – from collection and storage methods, as well as all the choices involved – so keep reading if you want to learn more!
Why I am here and who I am:
Hey Mama, I'm Trish— AKA Labor Nurse Mama, a labor and delivery nurse with over 16 years of high-risk OB experience. I am a mama to 7 kids and have given birth to 6, labored thousands of mamas, and delivered many babies. I have breastfed, um pretty much most of my adult life and had 2 experiences with low milk supply. It sucks and it was so emotional. I felt horrible. Lots of tears.
I am the creator of Calm Labor Confident Birth and The VBAC Lab birth classes' online birth class educator and the mama expert inside our Calm Mama Society Mama Membership, where we host weekly pregnancy & postpartum hangouts, expert workshops and have two doulas available to our members! You can find me over on IG teaching over 265k mamas daily.
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What is Cord Blood?
Cord blood is a type of stem cell-rich blood that is found in the umbilical and placenta after a is born.
Why Is Cord Blood Saved?
Cord blood contains stem cells that can be used to treat many diseases. This includes leukemia, sickle cell anemia, and other genetic disorders. In fact, over 80 diseases can be treated with cord blood stem cells. By banking your baby's cord blood, you're giving your family access to potentially life-saving treatments in the future.
How Is Cord Blood Collected?
Cord blood is collected from the umbilical cord after a baby is born. The collection process is relatively quick and painless, taking only about 10 minutes to complete. It begins with the doctor clamping and cutting the umbilical cord, then using a syringe to draw out the blood from the umbilical cord vein.
The cord blood is then stored in a special container and sent to the lab for processing. The sample is tested and checked for any infectious diseases, and if it passes all tests, it is ready to be used as stem cells. After collection, the cord blood can be cryogenically frozen and stored indefinitely in a controlled environment until needed.
Cord blood banking is a simple and painless process. The cord blood is collected immediately after birth and stored for future use. The process does not harm your baby or interfere with the birth process. It's a hassle-free way to ensure that your baby's stem cells are collected and stored for future use.
What is Cord Blood Compatibility?
Cord blood stem cells are a perfect match for your baby, and there's a 25% chance that they will be a match for a sibling. This means that if a family member needs a stem cell transplant in the future, there's a higher chance of finding a match within the family. This can be especially beneficial for families with a history of genetic disorders.
What is the Cost of Banking Cord Blood?
To store cord blood and tissue can be expensive, but it's worth considering the long-term benefits. The cost of cord blood banking may seem high, but it's important to compare this to the potential cost of treatment for a disease in the future. By banking your baby's cord blood, you're investing in your family's future health.
Public vs Private Cord Blood Banks
You can choose to cord blood donation to a public bank. By contributing to do that, your donation becomes readily available to any patient in need of a transplant, completely free of cost or fee. Public banks adhere to stringent quality assurance and FDA regulations to ensure the cord blood is sterile and contains sufficient stem cells for treatment.
Alternatively, you have the option to store your baby's cord blood in a private cord blood bank. While you will incur collection and ongoing annual storage fees, the cord blood will be reserved exclusively for your personal use. Keep in mind that private banks may not adhere to the same quality and sterility guidelines as public banks. They do not have the same strict guidelines in place.
Unlike private banks, public banks prioritize the storage of cord blood that contains enough stem cells for transplant. Don't miss out on the opportunity to make a meaningful difference by donating to a public bank today.
Whichever way you choose, be sure to decide before birth so that you are ready and have your cord blood collection kit ready and with you for your birth.
Is it Right for Me?
Lastly, cord blood banking can offer peace of mind for parents. It's natural for parents to worry about their child's health and future. By banking your baby's cord blood, you're taking a proactive step to protect their health and giving yourself the peace of mind that comes with knowing that you have a backup plan.
Delayed Cord Clamping & Cord Blood Banking
The effect of cord banking on delayed cord clamping is the time and amount of blood the baby will be able to get from the placenta. If you plan to bank your cord blood, then the delayed time has to be shortened somewhat, but it can be done. However, ACOG recommends that delayed cord clamping should not be altered by choosing cord blood banking. The benefits of delayed cord clamping are too valuable to be messed with and outweigh the chance of using banked cord blood.
Cord blood banking is a valuable investment in your family's health and future. It's a simple and painless process that can offer many benefits, including potential life-saving treatments, compatibility with family members, convenience, cost-effectiveness, and peace of mind.
While it's not the right choice for every family, cord blood banking is something to consider when deciding about your baby's health and future.
Speak with your health care provider or a cord blood banking specialist to learn more and make an informed decision for your family.