You have many things to consider as you embark on a surrogacy journey, but there’s one decision that you may not think about — cord blood banking. Preserving the stem cells found in your baby’s umbilical cord could hold the key to future medical treatments, benefiting not only your child but also other family members.
In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the remarkable benefits of cord blood banking, explore its relevance to surrogacy, and guide you through the process, ensuring that you have all the information you need to make an informed decision.
What is cord blood banking, and why should you consider it?
Because of incredible scientific advances, we now know that a baby’s umbilical cord contains specific blood cells called hematopoietic cells, also known as stem cells. These cells have significant powers to replace and repair damaged tissue due to medical conditions or disease. Cord blood banking preserves the cells that came from your baby to be used by your baby or other family members in the future, should they need to.
Cord blood banking can benefit more than just the child from whose umbilical cord it was harvested. The stem cells from the newborn are a perfect genetic match to the child and are highly likely to be a match to other biologically related family members, including siblings and parents. In other words, this one decision could reap major benefits for your family should this child or anyone else require treatment for a serious medical disorder that can be treated using stem cells.
What are cord blood stem cells are helpful for?
Cord blood stem cells have shown immense potential in the field of regenerative medicine. As medical research continues to advance, new discoveries regarding the therapeutic applications of cord blood stem cells are unfolding, offering hope for improved treatments and better outcomes. Estimates are that at least 80 diseases or conditions can be treated successfully with stem cells, including immune system disorders, metabolic disorders, blood disorders, and some types of cancer.
In surrogacy, who decides whether to bank the cord blood?
The decision regarding cord blood banking ultimately rests with the intended parents. Since the baby being carried by the surrogate is genetically related to you, it is your choice to determine whether to pursue cord blood banking. It’s important to note that the surrogate also plays a crucial role in the process. The surrogate’s consent is required, as she will undergo an additional blood draw to check for any potential infections during the birth. Open and honest communication between all parties involved is key to ensuring a mutual understanding and informed decision-making regarding cord blood banking for your surrogacy journey.
What is the cord blood collection process like?
The collection process for cord blood is a straightforward and non-invasive procedure that takes place during the delivery of your baby. Once you have made the decision to bank the cord blood, the cord blood bank you choose will provide your surrogate with a collection kit to bring with her on the day of delivery.
When your baby is born, and the umbilical cord is clamped and cut, the healthcare professional attending the birth, whether it’s a doctor or a midwife, will carefully and painlessly draw the blood from the umbilical cord into the collection kit. This process takes only a few minutes and does not pose any risk or discomfort to your baby or the surrogate.
The collection kit contains specific materials designed to preserve the integrity and quality of the cord blood. It typically includes a sterile collection bag or vial, anticoagulant solutions, and detailed instructions for the healthcare professional to follow.
Once the cord blood is collected and packaged in a collection kit, it is transported to the storage bank via a medical courier or a direct delivery service. Upon arrival, the cord blood undergoes meticulous testing, processing, and separation to isolate and concentrate the stem cells. Following these procedures, the stem cells are carefully stored in cryogenic containers, such as tanks filled with liquid nitrogen, which provide a stable and controlled environment for long-term storage.
Where and how are the stem cells stored?
The stem cells obtained from cord blood are carefully stored in specialized facilities that process and preserve these valuable cells. These facilities, known as cord blood banks, employ state-of-the-art cryogenic storage techniques to maintain the viability and potency of the stem cells over the long term. Cryogenic storage involves freezing the cord blood at very low temperatures, typically below -150 degrees Celsius (-238 degrees Fahrenheit), which effectively halts any cellular activity and preserves the integrity of the stem cells.
The storage banks maintain strict quality control measures and employ advanced security systems to safeguard precious cord blood samples. These measures ensure that the stem cells remain viable and accessible for potential future medical treatments, should the need arise. By entrusting your baby’s cord blood to a reputable cord blood bank, you can have peace of mind knowing that the stem cells are stored under optimal conditions, ready to be utilized if ever required.
What is our role as intended parents in cord blood banking?
As intended parents, your role in cord blood banking is vital to the process. Firstly, you will make an informed decision about whether to proceed with cord blood banking, considering the potential benefits and costs involved. Once you choose a reputable cord blood bank, you will coordinate with them to ensure a smooth experience. This includes arranging for the delivery of a collection kit to your surrogate before your due date and communicating your decision with your surrogate, your healthcare provider, and your birthing team.
Throughout the process, maintaining open communication with the cord blood bank, completing the necessary paperwork, and understanding the associated fees will be essential. Your active involvement ensures that your baby’s cord blood stem cells are successfully collected and preserved, offering potential health benefits for your family’s future.
Preserving the future with cord blood banking
Our experienced team will guide you through the process, providing the support and information you need to make an informed decision. By choosing Fairfax Surrogacy as your trusted partner, you can embark on your surrogacy journey with confidence, knowing that we will guide you through the cord blood banking process seamlessly. Take the first step and contact us today!