Give your baby a lifetime gift this festive season

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What greater gift could you give your baby this festive season than to be able to safeguard their health both now and for years to come?

Banking your child’s stem cells at birth is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invest in their future.

By storing your newborn’s umbilical cord stem cells, you’ll provide them with a valuable resource to help protect their health. Something that can be called upon at any time should they, or another member of the family, face health issues now or in the future.

It’s the gift that will carry on giving.

So let’s take a closer look at exactly what makes the gift of cord blood banking so precious.

This is a gift that:

  • Can protect your child from many different health issues

The really exciting news about cord blood stem cell therapy is its huge medical potential.

This ground-breaking form of medicine, first used in the 1980s, has now contributed to the successful treatment of more than 80 different diseases. This includes health issues ranging from certain cancers (including leukaemia and lymphoma), to immunity disorders, sickle cell disease and multiple sclerosis.

Did you know? Today, 80% of blood diseases are now treatable with cord blood stem cells.

As if that’s not impressive enough, researchers are also continuing to unlock its medical capabilities. Ongoing clinical trials reveal promising results in many different areas. With stem cell therapy proving successful in helping to treat varied health issues such as:

  • type 1 diabetes
  • strokes
  • autism
  • cerebral palsy
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease

There’s no doubt that stem cell therapy will play a crucial role in future healthcare.

  • Safeguard their health now and in the future

Who knows what your child may have to face now or as they reach adulthood. Should the worse happen and they develop a health problem, it’s reassuring to know you’ll have this powerful resource that could help their treatment.

Did you know? Cord blood stem cells can help to repair or rebuild injured or damaged cells for your child and potentially other family members too.

This could be especially important if you have a family history of genetic disease.

The bottom line is that banked stem cells could make all the difference in treating their illness or even beating it.

  • Remains risk-free

The process of collecting and storing your baby’s cord blood stem cells is a simple step that could reap big rewards later in your child’s life. More importantly, it is painless, non-invasive and risk-free for both you and your baby.

After birth, the umbilical cord is cut and usually discarded as medical waste. And yet it has so much to offer. It is a rich source of the highest quality stem cells which are fast becoming the forefront of modern medicine.

Did you know? Umbilical cord stem cells are young in comparison with stem cells from other sources like bone marrow. They carry a lower risk of transmitting viral infection.

 A simple and straightforward process

The process for collecting your baby’s stem cells couldn’t be easier. As soon as your newborn is safely delivered, the umbilical cord is clamped and cut.

To collect the important stem cells, blood is then simply extracted from the cord with a needle immediately after the birth.

It only takes the obstetrician, doctor, midwife or an assigned phlebotomist (someone trained to take blood) a couple of minutes to collect the cord blood. It’s as simple as that.

The collected sample is then immediately transferred to the chosen specialist laboratory or cord blood bank where it is processed and cryopreserved (frozen) until you may need it.

From the start to finish, the collection through to storage should be processed within 72 hours.

  • Can be easily accessed when needed

Should the worst happen and your child gets sick, and stem cell therapy is beneficial to their particular health issue, then retrieving their stored stem cells is quick and straightforward.

You simply contact the bank where the cells are stored and provide permission for the cord blood bank to liaise with your doctor. Everything is then arranged to make sure the cells are prepared and delivered for the date of the treatment.

Did you know? The stem cells can travel anywhere in the world without losing their potency because they travel frozen.

Wherever you are in the world, you can always access the stem cells should they be required. The stem cells are then thawed under strict controls at the clinic where they will be used, immediately prior to the specified treatment.

  • Lasts a lifetime

Stem cell banking really is a gift for life. Once frozen, the cells can be stored for many decades.

In the US, the Cord Blood Foundation has demonstrated efficient cell recovery at five years, 10 years, 15 years and 23.5 years after the cells were frozen.

Scientists report that cryogenically preserved cells potentially have no expiration date and frozen cord blood could possibly be frozen and stored indefinitely. This is verified by the fact that:

  • Cord blood stem cells are stored at or below -190 degrees Celsius where biological activity ceases.
  • Other cell types, as well as sperm, have been stored for long periods and have remained viable when thawed.

This could mean that valuable stem cells will be on hand throughout your child’s lifetime should the need arise.

Taking the next step

We all want our children to grow up healthy, strong and live a long life. However, no one knows what lies ahead and what might happen when we least expect it. By committing to banking your baby’s stem cells this festive season, you can truly help protect them against this uncertainty.

ALL SOURCES

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/how-freezing-cells-from-the-umbilical-cord-can-save-your-babys-life-5333420.html

https://parentsguidecordblood.org/en/diseases

https://parentsguidecordblood.org/en/diseases

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4489204/

https://parentsguidecordblood.org/en/news/how-long-can-cord-blood-be-stored

http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/34/1/220637_Laura.Fry-2014.pdf

https://www.pacificfertilitycenter.com/blog/life-span-frozen-sperm-ask-experts

Smart Cells is the UK’s first private cord blood storage company, helping parents from across the world take the pioneering decision to store the stem cells of their babies for greater security of health. For more information on umbilical cord blood banking or to organise a consultation, please email us on UAE@smartcells.com, or click here.

 

About the author: Shamshad Ahmed, CEO and Founder of Smart Cells International.

Shamshad Ahmed is CEO and Founder of Smart Cells International Ltd. Founded in 2000, Smart Cells is the UK’s first private cord blood company – its goal is to give parents more access to potentially life-saving treatment for their families. Smart Cells is one of the UK’s largest private banks, operating across the globe and storing over 50,000 cord blood samples from people in over 70 countries. Shamshad started his career in finance and foreign exchange at Citibank before moving over to the world of clinical trials. He holds a degree from Nottingham Trent University, and has been a member of the Young President’s Organization since 2008,  having served on the board for a number of those years.

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