Once the delivery gets over, the umbilical cord is no longer an essential element. After disconnecting it from the baby, doctors generally throw it away. But studies have proved that umbilical cord is abundant in stem cells, which function as building blocks of blood and immune system in general. Stem cells have the capacity to reproduce into other cells like red blood cells, platelets, white blood cells etc. This means these stem cells can be effectively employed in the treatment of cancer and certain other blood related diseases like sickle cell anaemia. These facts open the doors for cord blood banking. If you bank cord blood, which is other wise wasted, it can be effectively utilised for later needs of your child and also for that of a sibling.
The collection of umbilical blood is a simple process and will not cause pain or hurt to the mother and her baby. The collection takes place only after the safe delivery of the child. This blood banking technique is widely opted for, by those couples who have a medical history of certain diseases. By doing this, they are ensuring sufficient quantity of blood for their baby in case of a future need. If the parents choose to store the blood exclusively for own purposes, they will have to make a payment, which is usually high. If donated, the process does not involve any cost and the responsibility will be undertaken by donor cord blood banks. However, if any sort of complication arises during the delivery, doctors will not allow the collection of the umbilical blood. Parents who are interested in cord blood banking should approach the concerned blood bank by the thirty-fourth week of pregnancy.
Of course, money is a matter of lesser importance when it comes to saving your child’s life. But, it needs to be mentioned that many families find private cord blood banking as unaffordable. You need to make an annual storage rent apart from the initial processing fee. The exact storage span of cord blood is yet to be discovered. Presently, cord blood is found to be intact even after ten years of collection.