Looking for Opinions on Cord Blood Banking

Updated on September 27, 2010
C.C. asks from Crown Point, IN
19 answers

My husband wants to do it - I'm not so sure. Did you do it and why? Or why did you not choose to do it?

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answers from Madison on

Please read the below articles about the "Public Kit Donation project". They mail you a kit, and you can send the collected cord blood back to these public banks. It costs you nothing, and it can save lives. I would definitely have done it if this option existed when I delivered:



"Mothers interested in donating their baby’s cord blood to a participating public bank may contact the Carolinas Cord Blood Bank Public Kit Collection Program by calling ###-###-#### (daytime only)."

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answers from Chicago on

I have banked my first child's cord blood, just in case. I thought it was a minor investment in the long run to help save their or their siblings life. The number of treatments that cord blood uses is growing each day.
I am days away from delivering my third and I will be donating this child's CB. It seems wasteful just to discard. You can at least do this and may be a good compromise for each of you. I believe each hospital has its specified provider for donation, but I found my info on marrow.org

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answers from Los Angeles on

We chose not to do it because we let all of the blood drain from the placenta to the baby AND I deliver the placenta before cutting cord, to ensure that the baby gets all those wonderful stem cells, in the event that THEY need them for soem reasona t birth and we don't even know it. Some of my friends wait 10-15 minutes before cutting, so that the cord stops pulsating. I just wait until I deliver the placenta and then I KNOW the placenta is empty. Basically our babies get the stem cells.

Also, from my research there is no governing body to ensure that the cord banks stay in business. What if I paid for storage for 15 years and then it goes belly up?

I also looked at our family and we don't have any cancers, auto-immune issues, etc - so we felt that we were not at high risk for needing ay stem cells. We also do not make healthcare decisions that put us at risk for issues.

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answers from Minneapolis on

With both my boys, we donated to a public cord blood bank. I talked with my ob/gyn extensively about this and did a lot of research. He said (and I found out myself as well) that most diseases cannot be cured with a person's or a close family member's own cord blood, as they would also be genetic carriers for the disease. (Yes, there are stories where a family member's cord blood saved someone, but those are very few and far between.) But for many people who do have a disease that could be cured by cord blood, there are not enough stores to have as great an effect as there could be.

Because cord blood is so versatile, each packet could save several people, whereas if it was banked by a private company, there could be several people that would have no access to those life-saving cells.

And because my children are bi-racial, and several diseases are found more in one race than another, the demand for my children's cord blood was really quite high in the area where we delivered.

I would recommend looking into a public bank. I know there is one in Saint Louis, as we delivered there. I know that there are more opening every year. From where I see it, it is very selfish of me (and expensive, too!) to bank something that has the potential to save several people.

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answers from Phoenix on

We used Cord Blood Registry when my daughter was born.
We chose them because they've been in the business of cord blood banking for many, many years and their facilities are located in Tucson, AZ. They had worked many times with our hospital and our doctor, so everyone was familiar with the collection process and my doctor even had the collection kits at his office. He confirmed our choice in companies as a good one, stating they were a solid company who knew what they were doing. I packed the kit in my hospital bag, after the birth my doctor collected the cord blood and we simply called CBR who sent a courrier service to our room to collect our kit and take it to the banking facility. They were able to extract more than 5 times the amount of cells they needed from our daughter's sample. It wasn't cheap by any means (about $1900 for the collection and first year of banking), but the did offer us a discount when asked and you don't have to pay until you actually send them the collection kit. The yearly banking fee is very reasonable ($150). They are constantly doing research for more and better uses for stem cells and send a regular newsletter to keep us apprised of their work.
We plan on having 3 more children and will bank at least one more child's blood in the future, as cord blood stem cells can often be used not just for the child they came from, but also for parents, grandparents and siblings.
I should add that we didn't pay our doctor anything extra to do the collection and CBR is private banking, so your cord blood stem cells can only be used if you withdraw them.
I have a friend who donated her sons' cord blood and it still cost her almost the same to collect it for donation as it would have to collect it for private banking.
Good luck with the rest of your pregancy and I'm glad you're looking into cord blood banking. :-)

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answers from Indianapolis on

Please DO IT!

I didn't with either of my kids, and I regret it terribly. I also never expected to be diagnosed with cancer a few weeks after my daughter's birth. Luckily, chemo seems to have gotten all the cancer.......for now, but that cord blood could be a life-saving stem cell transplant for me if I have a recurrence.

As a cancer survivor, I can no longer donate blood, organs, etc. I wish I'd been more selfless when I had the chance to donate bone marrow, blood, etc.

You NEVER know what lies ahead of you in life.

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answers from Austin on

DON'T DO IT! That blood belongs to your baby. Those are your baby's stem cells. Research delayed cord clamping. Do not cut the cord until it has stopped pulsing.




answers from Chicago on

We donated our son's cord blood. It seemed the best for us and everyone else. If enough people continue to donate it becomes part a bigger pool of options and hope for many people--just like donating blood to a blood bank. And there is no cost.

Private cord blood storage is very expensive, so unless you can afford it, consider donating.



answers from Los Angeles on

We are doing it. To be honest, I am not sure if it will ever help, and I am usually pretty skeptical about these things, but I feel like it is just another insurance policy for us. We didn't with our first and now I want to make sure we do with our last. There's also a history of blood-related cancers in my family, so I don't want to mess around.

I agree about delayed cord cutting, as well, but I am unfortunately having another C-section so that's not an option.



answers from Chicago on

DO IT! I have heard of more people using it or needing it. There are so many things that require cord blood. I just saw a story about it today (a NFL player wished he had it for his son) had they had it their son may not have passed away.

I think the more "security" we have the better :)



answers from Chicago on

i donated with my first and now i know that one should delay cord clamping so baby gets all that blood back into itself, this is why so many kids have jaundice. once you do that there usually isnt much left to bank. IMO its just too high if an expense if you dont have any risk factors

o and to clarify donation is completely free not sure why the previous posters friend had a cost associated with it?



answers from Chicago on

We ended up not banking it after much research. However, as many have stated, the best option is to donate it. If you or a family were ever to need it, there may be a possibilty that your donation is available for use (of course a risk you take that it isn't). Just make sure you order the donation kit and have it with you, otherwise, it won't get collected.

I would say, if money is no object, than I would do it without doubt.

I hadn't heard about delayed cord cutting until this post, so I would defintiely check into that option as well. Thanks mamasouce!



answers from Atlanta on

Why on earth WOULDN'T you do it? You could save your own life, your child's life or someone else's life in the future! It's painless and simple. You can go private and pay for it or donate it to the national cord blood registry so it will be available to any who needs it. I banked both of my children's cord blood -one private and one on the national cord blood registry. This is one of those things that EVERYONE needs to be doing! Particularly if you have any African-American, Native American, or Latino blood, you should do it because there are far fewer reserves for those groups. I'm on the national bone marrow registry as well. If you could one day save or improve even one life -wouldn't that be fantastic?


answers from Chicago on

I choose to donate it.

Here is why. We have no family history going pretty far back in our family tree of any of the disorders it would help. I had heard from medical professionals (I worked in helathcare) that there is only enough to "get tings started" and that you would need to have another child, or your child who was a match would still have to donate more to help if your child got sick. Honestly we also couldn't afford that kind of "what if" policy.

We donated it because it could help someone right away. It wasn't sitting in a freezer somewhere when a child who was in the hospital suffering could use it. I went through Lifesource. There was no cost to us and even with an emergency c-section with my first we were able to donate. Both my kids have certificates in their baby books that say "I was a hero before I could talk".



answers from Chicago on

We definitely did it. There is cancer in our family and there always seems like technology keeps coming up with new cures for diseases. You just never know. We have two children and we banked both of theirs through Cord Blood Registry (my Dad is an OB/GYN and he did the research for me). I also like the idea of donating - especially if we had more children. While the start-up cost can be pricey, the annual fee is about $125 and that's peace of mind I can afford.



answers from Chicago on

We've done it twice through CBR (Chord Blood Registry).
We had planned on doing it with our daughter and then kinda decided not to but in the delivery room we decided to do it. Basically, the doctor said if you can afford it do it, if not don't. The likelyhood that we'll need it is slim but you never know. She said that she didn't do it with her children but wish she had just because she could afford it.
So we decided right away to do it again with my son who is now 10 months old just like we had with my daughter 2 years prior. Shortly after my son was born he had a bleed on his brain which meant that he had a stroke. Thankfully he is perfectly fine and the problem fixed itself when the blood vessel broke. His neurosurgeon said at minimun he expected that a surgical procedure would be necessary to fix the problem because of the type of bleed it was but it didn't end up being necessary. Had there been any damage due to lack of oxygen causing delays, the chord blood likely could've been used. Thank God he didn't require any surgery or chord blood but it did make me think, wow we actually might have an option to surgery because we have this chord blood. That is pretty cool.
So that would be my advise to you. If you can afford it, go for it. You'll probably never need it and that's a good thing. Also, you may also be able to donate it to a bank if you decide to not bank it yourself so that could be an option. It's amazing how things continue to move forward in the use of chord blood and the future will only bring more advancements to the use of it.



answers from Chicago on

Just an FYI: If you choose to go down this path and but do *not* end up using your kit, make sure to put it in a safe place so you can send it back to the company. I had an unexpected, emergency c-section with no time to spare. Our kit was lost in all our confusion and the company charged us $100 for an unused kit.



answers from Chicago on

We chose to donate our son's cord to lifesource. Ultimately cord banks are a business. Several have gone bankrupt in this poor economy. More than one simply abandoned the facilities and therefore the stored cords. If you choose a bank verify their plan for your child's cord should they need to close the business. Also check with how they ate functioning as a facility. It was suggested to me that the climates would not be truly conducive for long term storage. We chose lifesource because they are a free organization that will use the cord in the best way. And God forbid your child need it and it is still available it is there if not they will search far a match. And all this without a ridiculous cost.



answers from Champaign on

Like some others have said we did not do it, we chose to delay cord clamping instead.

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