Health and Wellness

Learn About Cord Blood Banking with AlphaCord

May 13, 2024

Author -

Melissa Iftimie

Cord blood banking for Baby, should you do it? What even is it? We look to the experts at AlphaCord to tell us everything we need to know about cord blood and tissue banking.

What is cord blood banking? We’ve all heard of it, but let’s learn about it! Let's start with the basics. We’ve teamed up with the stem cell experts at AlphaCord, to understand everything we need to know about cord blood and stem cell banking.

AlphaCord specializes in cord blood and tissue banking. They have dedicated nearly 20 years to helping hundreds of thousands of families safeguard their newborns' stem cells for potential future use.

What is the ‘cord’ in cord blood?

We’re talking about the umbilical cord. Remember that the umbilical cord connects the mom and baby during pregnancy. It goes like this: mom’s uterus → placenta → umbilical cord → baby. 

This cord is the baby’s lifeline and it gives the baby what she needs to grow - things like nutrients and oxygen. The placenta also nurtures the baby, but it works for mom too. It takes care of mom by producing the hormones needed to grow a baby and keeping mom and baby separate.

So what’s cord blood?

Cord blood is the blood that remains in the baby’s umbilical cord and placenta after birth. It is a rich source of a powerful kind of stem cells. These are called Hematopoietic stem cells. Hematopoietic stem cells are special cells because they can turn into different kinds of cells. These stem cells turn into blood cells like platelets, white blood cells and red blood cells. 

How do you get cord blood?

A doctor or midwife will collect the cord blood after you and your baby are done with it! This happens shortly after delivery. After the umbilical cord is cut from the mother, your healthcare provider will simply collect the blood within the umbilical cord and put it in a sterilized collection bag to be stored for future use. 

What’s cord blood banking?

Cord blood banking is keeping these powerful cells for future medical use. When you choose to collect your newborn’s stem cells from their cord blood, after collection, you’ll ship them to the lab where they will be processed and cryogenically frozen for your family to keep safe in the case that you ever need to use them. By privately banking your stem cells, you have the peace of mind knowing that they are available should anyone in your family ever need them. 

What can cord blood be used for?

The special kind of stem cells in the umbilical cord are valuable because they can be used in the treatment of 80+ diseases and conditions, such as leukemia, lymphoma, and certain genetic disorders like sickle cell anemia. 

It’s safe to say we are only beginning to understand the potential for cord blood banking, and it’s very cool. There are over a thousand clinical trials studying new treatments with stem cells derived from cord blood. Some of these clinical trials are researching treatments for autism, cerebral palsy, strokes, cardiac issues, and many more. 

Who is this right for?

Really, every family! But here are a few things to call out that make it an even better match:

Does your family have a history of medical conditions like certain types of cancers or blood disorders? 

If yes, this is a great way to protect your baby and your entire family. Your baby is a 100% genetic match to these stem cells. Siblings have a 75% chance of being a potential match and parents and even grandparents have a probability of being matched as well.

Does your family prioritize health? 

Then cord blood banking is a perfect way to increase that chance your family will have more possibilities for future treatments in case you need them. 

Do you trust the potential of science? 

We are just starting to understand the potential of stem cells. You could be setting up your baby and entire family for some amazing medical benefits when they are older! 

Stem cells have only been cryogenically frozen for a few decades but research has shown that stem cells can remain frozen for many decades and still be viable. Clinical research is moving quickly and it will be incredible to see how regenerative medicine improves in the future.

Are you or your partner an ethnic minority? 

Public stem cell banks don’t have as many donations from ethnic minorities. Privately banking your newborn’s stem cells ensures that should your family ever need to use them you’ll have them (hopefully you never will).

Do you geek out over insurance and other protection plans? 

Well this is the one for your baby and your family’s future. If you’ll do anything for that peace of mind - you gotta do this!

What happens after the blood is collected at the baby's birth?

The cord blood is screened for quality and then is processed and placed into cryogenic storage tanks. It is frozen at -196 Celsius! They can be stored for a long long time - think decades.

What makes AlphaCord so special?

There are quite a few cord banking options out there, so let’s learn more about AlphaCord, now that we’re all on the same page about cord blood banking. AlphaCord is the leader in cord blood banking. We love that AlphaCord is women-led and that they have been around since 2006. The founders are parents and their whole team is passionate about cord blood banking and its benefits for every family.

You’ve got people

AlphaCord assigns you a personal newborn stem cell educator from the first time you contact them. This is awesome! You have a person you can ask all your questions to and help you understand and get through every step of the process. They promise to go above and beyond. 

100% Viable Rate

This means that in the nearly 20 years that AlphaCord has been in business whenever a family has needed their stem cells AlphaCord has delivered. Your baby’s stem cells are safe, secure and ready if needed.

They guarantee that your stem cells will be able to be used for medical treatment.  If the cells you preserve are not viable (read: not usable for whatever reason) they offer a $85,000 guarantee to find new cells. 

You have exclusive access to your baby’s stem cells

This means the cells are yours and only yours. Unlike public banks, the cells are stored only for your family’s use and can only be released to your family for use in the future. It’s like your own private safe deposit box with life saving material inside.  

AlphaCord keeps it affordable

Some families may think cord blood banking is really expensive. AlphaCord has different pricing options you can choose without sacrificing quality standards of care. Founded by parents who believed that cord blood banking should be accessible for all families, AlphaCord continues that promise today. They offer annual packages starting as low as $81/a month for 12 months that include the entire processing and storage for the first year. 

Parenting is all about being flexible and AlphaCord knows that. They also offer upfront payment pricing for cord blood packages for nearly half of the other companies in the space while maintaining the highest levels of service and quality. 

You can bank it all or just the cord blood

You can choose to bank cord blood, cord tissue, or the placenta tissue for maximum protection. Each item (cord blood, cord tissue,and placenta tissue) offers different benefits from different types of stem cells. There are more details on the different types of stem cell preservation that you can learn more about from AlphaCord!

They are the highest quality you can find

First, they’ve got the creds. Their state-of-the-art laboratory is AABB accredited, HIPAA Compliant and registered with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This ensures that their laboratory adheres to the industry’s most stringent standards and protocols for processing and banking cord blood and tissue stem cells. It’s monitored 24/7 with continuous temperature and environment checks. 

It’s at this lab where everything happens. Your newborn’s cord blood, cord tissue, and placental tissue are tested multiple times which ensures that these stem cells are viable and ready to be used if needed.  

They’ve been around and know what they are doing

AlphaCord has successfully processed and stored stem cells for the past two decades for hundreds of thousands of families. Are you the next one?

Check them out!

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