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Cord Blood Banking – Myths Busted
Although, cord blood banking is rapidly gaining acceptance among the common masses, there are certain misconceptions lurking in people’s minds. Here are some common myths that have been busted to show you the real picture.
Myth 1: Doctors do not treat a patient with their own cord blood sample because it would contain some disease.
Fact: A large number of autologous stem cell transplants (which use a patient’s own cells) are performed each year to treat disease such as leukemia, myeloma, lymphoma, and other solid tumors. Research published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology states that a patient’s own stem cells are the best choice for transplant, even if there is early-onset disease.
A study demonstrated that autologous transplants on babies suffering from severe leukemia were as successful as allogeneic ones. The first has the advantage that there is no risk of graft versus host disease, which is the most important cause of death among transplanted patients; is readily available; and there is a low risk of contamination of cells. In April, 2001, doctors in Canada performed the first ever autologous transplant on a 10-month-old baby to treat retinoblastoma, a type of eye cancer that had spread to his spinal cord.
Myth 2: if your family has no record of cancer, your baby or sibling will never require stem cells.
Fact: Families look to cord blood storage as a type of insurance for a future need of their child or family member. Most of the cancers are still a mystery and the bad news is that they spread at an alarming rate. The latest study reveals the horrifying fact that one in every 630 children is prone to cancer before the age of 15. Therefore, it is always a good idea to opt for cord blood banking. You never know when you need it to save your child’s life.
Myth 3: Cord blood collection draws vital blood from the baby.
Fact: Not at all. Cord blood stem cells are present in the umbilical cord, which is anyway discarded after delivery. The umbilical cord is fixed and cut, and then, the blood is drawn from it.
Myth 4: You can offer a donation to a public cord blood bank and recover the stem cells in the future, if necessary.
Fact: Only if the cord blood sample is banked and has not been used for a research purpose or for any other patient, a family could get their donated blood sample back. It is important to know that not all donated cord blood samples are banked. Numerous study reports reveal that more than 50 percent of potential donors are not eligible to donate cord blood. About 71 percent of donations are prone to rejection by the banks based on factors such as family medical record, volume of collection and blood sample analysis of the mother.
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