60-70% more life-saving CD34+ stem cells can be collected when banking the placenta blood in addition to the cord blood, which is awesome for 2 reasons: 1) studies have shown that the more stem cells transplanted increases the likelihood of transplant success and survival, and 2) more stem cells available means the possibility to provide more than one treatment (to that same child or another friend/family member).
It is believed that mesenchymal cells (MSCs) and MSC-like cells contained in the placenta may have amazing regenerative powers and studies are currently underway to look into their potential in therapeutic applications. Placenta banking increases the chances that the life of your child or someone you love could one day be saved by the very the organ and cells that once nourished your child in the womb.
First you need to choose the bank (see my comparison list on Mommy Nearest) and sign up, usually between your 28th - 34th week of pregancy. There are tons of companies out there offering cord blood banking, and a few offering placenta tissue banking, but LifebankUSA is the only one that also offers placenta blood banking - meaning you can bank all 3 types together and the most stem cells possible!
Once registered, the collection kit will be sent to you, you'll discuss the plan with your delivery team, and after your baby is born the blood and tissues will be collected (completely painlessly to you and your baby) and sent to the facility for processing and storage.
No problem! In most cases you can delay cord clamping and still obtain enough cord blood and stem cells, especially if you also consider placenta blood and tissue banking!
Some may incorrectly assume twins or siblings will be a close enough match if they are ever in the need of stem cells, but this isn't necessarily the case. Banking every child's cord blood, placenta blood, and placenta tissue will give everyone in your family the best chances. Think of it as insurance... not everyone can afford the highest level of protection, but if you can afford it, wouldn't you want it? Suppose cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or a debilitating car accident effects someone in your family and treating or curing it was as simple as having a close match of stem cells or placenta tissue available. The possibility of this happening is very real and so is the need to think seriously about whether or not cord blood banking is for you.
You can fill out the form here to receive a free info packet from LifebankUSA, or call them at 1-877-543-3226 with any questions. They have frequent promotions, may offer discounts for multiples as well as payment plans!
It'll go in the garbage as medical waste. Now, that's a real waste if you ask me!! Or... you could eat it. Seriously though, it's quite common practice in many cultures - even here in the US some moms will have the placenta encapsulated or made into a tincture in an attempt to avoid postpartum depression (I seriously considered it since something like 85% of twin moms will experience PPD!) Some other options include planting it under a tree, your "tree of life" so to speak. Or using it as a kind of stamp to create placenta art. Yep, that's a thing!
What about you? Did you bank any of your babies' cord blood, placenta blood, or tissue? Do you plan to? Why or why not - share in a comment below!!