There are many reasons that families choose to bank their baby’s cord blood. But for one family in Alabama, the deciding factor was a hereditary condition affecting one of the grandparents in the family.
Cindy and David Wester have three children – a 3 year old boy and 2 twin girls. The family chose to bank the umbilical cord blood of all three children, calling the decision “an investment” in the future of their children.
The decision was easy for the family to make after learning David’s father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Patients living with any one of 75 life threatening diseases have benefitted from banked cord blood, and according to Cindy, that fact alone was enough to convince the family cord blood banking was for the best.
“We knew that Parkinson’s has been undergoing stem cell research for a very long time, and it is one of the diseases which is also hereditary. So when you’re pregnant, that of course is a major fear.”
The Wester family followed the cord blood collection process for all three children. After registering with a cord blood banking program, a collection kit was sent to the family home. Cindy and David brought the kit to the hospital for each delivery; a collection specialist clamped the cord, collected the blood, and sent the sample away for storage.
Should any of the children inherit Parkinson’s or develop another disorder, Cindy and David are confident that cord blood banking provides a valuable option to improve those potential diagnoses.
“A parent wants to do everything in their power to protect their child against the evils in the world whether they be medical evils or anything else.”