Most parents will feel like they are seventh heaven when they learn that they are expecting a new member in the family. With this excitement comes a grand preparation for welcoming the baby, that including what name to give, which pediatrician and obstetrician to go to, and in what hospital to deliver the baby. As soon as the mother learns that she is pregnant, it is suggested she visit her doctor to assess her and her future baby’s health condition. There are so many decisions about the baby’s condition that parents need to face right before and after their child is born. One of these is whether to go through the process of cord blood banking.
Cord blood banking is a method whereby blood is collected from the baby’s umbilical cord right after it has been cut and removed. The procedure usually takes place within 10 minutes after giving birth to the baby. After enough blood has been extracted from the cord, which typically needs to reach 75 ml of blood, it is then submitted to the laboratory for screening of viral, bacterial and other harmful microorganism to ensure that it is safe for possible use later.
So why is cord blood banking a good decision for parents? What positive effects will it bring to your child when you submit him or her for this procedure? Here are a few things that will help you decide whether to get cord blood banking or not.
It can save your baby from life-threatening diseases. The umbilical cord is found to be a good supply of stem cells needed to fight over 80 life threatening diseases, like blood disorders, cancer, genetic disease and some immune system disorders. These stem cells are also used to help make the immunity of an individual become stronger following chemotherapy. Also, it is well established that stems cells are used as replacement to the traditional bone marrow transplantation. Interestingly, new studies have shown that stem cells also help improve childhood developmental disorders such as autism, cerebral palsy, and spinal cord injuries, etc.
May or may not be used at all. Though cord blood banking is a good option that parents can choose nowadays, getting your baby a cord blood bank will not be an assurance that he or she will be using it in the coming years. One example is if your baby afflicted with leukemia. Doing cord blood banking may not be the best choice, as using this approach will do no good for the child, since the same blood will get mixed in an already compromised immune system. In this case, you will not be able to use the cord blood collected, as it can only put the life of the child at a higher risk.
Such an expensive option. Banking cord blood is such a costly thing. Most banks likely ask initial investment somewhere between $1,500 and $2,500 which covers the collection, the storage and the processing of the documents. Though it is still unclear how long the blood can be stored, many banks ask annual fees ranging from $100 to $300 depending on the bank’s policies.
Cord blood banking is a good preparation to extend the life of your child. However, you still need to consider the things above because this is only one of many options to help plan ahead for your child’s health.