Elise Copps of CHCH News investigates the benefits of cord blood banking. In the clip below, we hear from Insception Lifebank’s own Scientific Director, Dr. Ian Rogers, about the myriad reasons to bank your baby’s cord blood as an investment in your family’s healthy future:
“Banking cord blood is one of many medical decisions expectant parents are faced with… and it’s pretty confusing.
Inside the tanks at Insception Lifebank are thousands of units of cord blood. They’re full of stem cells that can be transformed and transplanted to treat diseases like cancer.
As Dr. Ian Rogers explains, “The blood stem cells are extracted from the umbilical cord and they’re frozen down and they can be stored basically forever.”
The Iafrates family banked all three of their children’s cord blood – but Alyssa Iafrates will hopefully never have to use it. “If there was an illness that they had that we could use as a treatment option. It was just something that gave us a sense of security that we had done what we could in order to help them.”
Right now, privately banked cord blood is like an insurance policy. Some diseases, like eye cancer, can be treated with a child’s own cord blood; but in other cases it can’t be used.
According to Dr. Carol Portwine, a paediatric oncologist with McMaster Children’s Hospital, a child with leukaemia can’t receive their own cord blood; it could contain the disease. They can use a sibling’s cells, though there’s only a one in four chance that brothers or sisters will be a match. The sample must also be large enough.
But uses for cord blood could soon expand, even to include adults. It’s being tested as a solution to diabetes and other age-related diseases, and as Dr. Rogers adds: “cord blood is actually being used or being investigated as a treatment for things like skin wounds or possibly to make cartilage.”
Down the line it’s possible that a baby’s cells could treat a grandparent. But the decision to bank now is mostly financial. At Insception, it costs $1000 up front plus $125 a year for storage. Extracting it is risk free for both mom and baby, but you have to assume the risk that it could go to waste.”
For more information about banking with Insception Lifebank, don’t hesitate to contact us at your convenience. We’re standing by to answer any questions you might have!