Cord Blood Banking... — The Bump
Dads & Dads-to-be

Cord Blood Banking...

Hey Fellas,

Did any of you, who are Dads now, sign up for Cord or Tissue Blood Banking? If you are expecting, have you heard about this?

Our doctor mentioned that this is like homeowner's insurance...you have it for security but you pray you never have to use it. Makes total sense, but just wondering your thoughts and if you are also doing it.

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Re: Cord Blood Banking...

  • My wife was talking about it and I also read about it on here somewhere.  It sounds like a good thing to do to me.  You never know.  I am pretty sure we are going to.

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  • I'm not 100% sold on it. We chose to let the placenta stop beating before the umbilical cord was clamped. Based on current recommendations by that American Association of Pediatrics we decided the cost didn't justify the possible benefits. It's worth researching and making your own decisions, but at present it's kind of a long shot technology.
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  • image LuckyDad:
    I'm not 100% sold on it. We chose to let the placenta stop beating before the umbilical cord was clamped. Based on current recommendations by that American Association of Pediatrics we decided the cost didn't justify the possible benefits. It's worth researching and making your own decisions, but at present it's kind of a long shot technology.

    Are you only able to do one or the other?  I really like what I have read about leaving the cord attached but also the idea of banking cord blood.

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  • We keep getting stuff in the mail about donating cord blood. What's that all about. Are there reputable organizations that are using this for valid medical research? It's confusing and a little weird. They are pretty persistant.
  • image StayHomeDad:

    image LuckyDad:
    I'm not 100% sold on it. We chose to let the placenta stop beating before the umbilical cord was clamped. Based on current recommendations by that American Association of Pediatrics we decided the cost didn't justify the possible benefits. It's worth researching and making your own decisions, but at present it's kind of a long shot technology.

    Are you only able to do one or the other?  I really like what I have read about leaving the cord attached but also the idea of banking cord blood.

    Yes, you can only do one or the other.

     

    image Konigfrustuck:
    We keep getting stuff in the mail about donating cord blood. What's that all about. Are there reputable organizations that are using this for valid medical research? It's confusing and a little weird. They are pretty persistant.

    Banking cord blood can be expensive (about 2 grand initially and then a fee every year thereafter, depending on the company you use), so not everyone can afford to do it. But if their kid gets leukemia, the parents can use cord blood donated by someone else to treat it. Sometimes, donated cord blood is also used in medical research (they're working on treatments and potential cures for stuff like MS). So if you're not planning to bank it yourself, you should try to donate it, it's free, it can help sick kids -- but not all hospitals are able to accept cord blood donations, so that might not be an option for you. You can ask your OBGYN/Midwife if you're interested.

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  • Don't actually plan on using your own child's cord blood. More often than not it isn't actually beneficial to the child it comes from compared to cord blood that is from another child. I believe it's only a 48% chance of being beneficial in the long run. We did a lot of research and I suggest you do the same.

    Allowing the cord to stop pulsing on it's own decreases the newborn's risk of anemia and other illness (including jaundice), and mom's risk of hemorrhage during the delivery of the placenta (not sure how, but it came up at one of our appt). Additionally, in the event that a child is born not breathing, cord massage is known as an effective way to help stimulate blood flow, and much safer than most alternatives, while performing CPR.

    As with any medical procedure (and cord banking is a medical procedure) there are risks to all involved. There are public banks though, but they are like blood banks-you give yours and if you need some in return later, you get someone else's.   

  • First, this is very new science...there is no standard procedural advantage to this new trend as a result.  If your baby is sick, God forbid, having this stored is not a "get out of sick" card for the kid.  That, to me, does not justify the cost.  It really is an unexplored area of medicine without any clearly defined, and proven, track record.

    Secondly, THE COST.  It is very expensive.  On top of that, many states do not even have centers for this.  Wisconsin does not, and that brings the price up even more.  Remember, this is not science that has results that you can look at to show you the benefits of this practice.

    I know that we all want to do what is best for our children, and protect them in any way we can.  But please recognize that this is very new medicine, not even ten years, and there are no case studies you can look to to validate the worth of such a procedure.  I am more inclined to think human stem cells, which can be taken from parents, are more effective in curing some illnesses that can be present in children.  At least this science has been researched and validated in many cases over the last 20 years.

    Be aware that these are private, profit driven businesses, and not feel good charities.  They will pray on our fears in an attempt to make their sales.  As with anything in this arena, fully research it based on your beliefs before spending that kind of cheese.  

     

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  • I know I am not a dad but I thought I would add to this little convo! DH comes to all my appts with me and during our last visit this came up. All the things PP have mentioned were talked about. It cost a fortune to start "banking" process and then you have to pay a monthly fee for them to keep it. Also if your or your SO don't have any genetic issues LO isn't at high risk for anything.

    Our doctor told us that the cord is really only good for about TWO YEARS!

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  • That is exaclty how I felt about it. I would much rather have that blood inside of our son, than in a freezer bag tucked away for some unknown malady in the far far future.

    We are doing a natural birth, gonna let everything run its course.

  • The stem cells extracted from the cord blood have been proven to treat 80 different diseases with dozens more pending further research. Even the cord has been shown to provide valuable opportunity to treat heart disease and spinal injuries not just in the child, but parents too. The stem cells are what you are harvesting, not the actual blood (plasma) necessarily. $2000 and a couple hundred bucks a year seems like a small price to pay God forbid something happen to my son. Most spend more than that on vacation every year.

    Just be sure to do your research and discuss it with your OB. Stem cells ARE the future of medicine. Any researcher will tell you that......

  • image jessicamunsonhill:

    The stem cells extracted from the cord blood have been proven to treat 80 different diseases with dozens more pending further research. Even the cord has been shown to provide valuable opportunity to treat heart disease and spinal injuries not just in the child, but parents too. The stem cells are what you are harvesting, not the actual blood (plasma) necessarily. $2000 and a couple hundred bucks a year seems like a small price to pay God forbid something happen to my son. Most spend more than that on vacation every year.

    Just be sure to do your research and discuss it with your OB. Stem cells ARE the future of medicine. Any researcher will tell you that......

    Do your own research. You left out that stem cells don't ONLY come from cord blood...and most of the 80 diseases you cite aren't even being treated with cord stem cells. This is propaganda by the private cord banks. Read the fine print.

    In terms of treating childhood cancer and other genetic disease....doctors will not use the child's own cord blood because the cells are thought to have the genetic material that caused the issue in the first place.

    We did delayed clamping and donated what was left in the cord to a public bank.  Research this well before arriving at a decision - from sources other than the private banks. IMO it's a scam that preys on the fear of parents. 

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  • This is my first post, but I had to jump in on this, so please forgive the lack of an introduction for the moment.  My wife and I strongly considered this, despite the fact that we would be spending money for it we really don't have.

    I was very skeptical of the claims that were made by the Cord Blood Banking (CBB) companies, but if it could eventually save my childs life, I felt almost negligent if we didnt.  Fortunately, my brother is a PhD in Molecular Biology doing research on DNA splicing using retro viruses and the like.  (Im only able to understand about 25% of what he talks about, but its pretty much the cutting edge in this sort of thing).  He recently published a peer reviewed and accepted journal article on "curing" Alzheimer's by replacing certain portions of defective DNA in the brain, so I trust his assessment of stuff like this.

     When I asked him about the reality of CBB'ing he said that in theory its an "OK" idea, but the big issue is that a lot of the diseases you may want to treat are DNA based, and the Cord Blood has the same "defective" DNA that caused the disease in the first place, so Cord Blood cannot be used effectively (as already pointed out by a previous poster).  The real kicker is that he believes that the sort of advancements in medical science to utilize the stem cells in that manner will not be made in any time in the foreseeable future.  One of the issues that people in his field are running into, is that the more they learn, the more complicated they realize everything is, and that is not nearly as straightforward as they thought and that these type of solutions are perpetually just out of reach. 

    What he said is likely to happen is that they will be able to convert certain cells already found in the body (ie bone marrow - these cells already produce other cells) into universal stem cells, rendering the eventual need for cord blood stem cells unnecessary.

    Bottom line, while it is sort of like an insurance policy or warranty as previously mentioned, its like buying one for a car that no one has any idea how its built, and no one knows how to make any of the replacement parts for now or any time in the next 75 years.  IMHO you are better off donating the blood to a public bank for research purposes, and investing the money you would spend on the collection / banking fees in a decent mutual fund.
  • I definitely appreciate all the responses, however I have seen first hand how beneficial banking the baby's cord blood is. You have to realize that this is not totally new science but an alternative to what was previously being done. If a child was diagnosed with a debilitating disease before the mid 1990's, the standard was bone marrow transplant. Stem cell transplant from Cord blood is the same premise yet researchers are finding more and more benefits to it. I'm not sure where everyone lives but in my state they passed a legislation HB709 requiring that doctors had to give expectant parents information on the medical uses of umbilical cord  blood stem cells and the options as far as saving, donating or discarding them. That is not propaganda. Of course, there are going to be cases that the stem cells may not benefit that child and there may be cases when the second child's cord blood will benefit the first or vice versa. All I know is being in this day and age I want to have as many chips stacked in my favor in case something does happen. Plus I read an article on the cost of getting the cord blood from a public bank if you didn't bank it privately and it was around $25k. Even if insurance picked up 50% of the cost that its still alot. I'd rather spend $2K now than $25K later. 

    By the way, here are some articles I read on cord blood that may help your decision either way. one is from ABC News and the other Fox News

     

    http://video.foxnew.com/v/4623297/should-you-save-your-babys-cord-blood/

     http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/cord-blood-stem-cells-restore-hearing-toddler/story?id=16750718#.UAVz5GGmin8

     

  • Great article on Cord Blood Banking: http://www.bankingoncordblood.com/
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  • edited June 2014
  • We did the cord blood bank with our LO, it was roughly $1500 initially and an annual fee of $180 until our child is 18.  With our second one we may donate our cord blood but will not spend any money on banking it this time.

    I agreed to it for the first one to keep piece with my wife.
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  • AppleJacks81AppleJacks81
    100 Comments Second Anniversary 5 Love Its
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    edited July 2014
    Lurking mom.....I am a pharmacist at a hospital that does bone marrow transplants in adults - Sometimes cord blood can be used if there is no suitable bone marrow donor for the cancer patient (I think it can be used in kids with leukemias as well, but it's not my area). It doesn't need to be as perfect of a "match" as another donor would need to be. So yes, donated cord blood can be and is currently used in today's medicine. If you don't save it for your own kid, consider donating it if your hospital does it - it's free and can save a life.
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  • Dads & Dads-To-Be: cord blood banking...

    After I was pregnant, I decided that it was a complete necessity to store each of my children's cord blood. Knowing that one's own cord blood is always going to match perfectly is all the assurance I needed. I'm sure that researchers will find even more cord blood uses in 10-plus years. My advice to anyone who thinks they should pay the money to store blood is that one day if you need that cord blood for your child or even a sibling (because cord blood can be used to save a sibling's life), you'll want your baby's cord blood to be stored.

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