Advantages and Disadvantages
While donating, Peoples have much concerns about cord blood banking pros and cons. We have tried here to state both Cord Blood advantages and disadvantages briefly.
Cord blood is rich in stem cells which may helpful to regenerate the immune system or treat diseases that harm the blood, such as leukemia and few specific cancers, sickle-cell anemia, and few metabolic disorders. There are a certain ways for transplant patients to get blood cells (umbilical and placenta, bone marrow, peripheral/circulation) which are painful as well as fearful for donor, but cord blood is easier to match with patients, and because it is gathered just after birth from the umbilical cord, it's a painless procedure.
"The outcomes of cord blood transplants have improved over the last decade because researchers and clinicians have learned more about dosing cord blood, picking better matches, and giving the patient better supportive care as they go through the transplant," says Joanne Kurtzberg, Managing Director, director of the paediatric bone marrow and stem cell transplant program at Duke University.
Medical scientists are still working to find out more ways to treat more diseases with cord blood. For example, at Duke University, researchers are using patients' own cord blood in trials for cerebral palsy and Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (a condition in which the brain does not receive enough oxygen). Experiments are also going on for the treatment of autism at the Sutter Neuroscience Institute in Sacramento, California.
This is only possible if you choose private bank to store your cord blood. There the samples are reserved for your own family; nobody else can access or use it without your prior consent even to any effected and deserved or any research purpose. But if you choose public bank to preserve your cord blood, on the other hand, any deserved patient who is compatible to your donated cord blood use it; and obviously there is no guarantee that it will be available if and when your family needs it.
Collecting the cord blood is much easier, even pain free than collecting the bone marrow. Getting the bone marrow still have some risks and it is painful for the donor as well
On the same time, cord blood can be stored and it is ready to use for anyone who needs it and match it. On the otherhand, bone marrow should be used as early as possible after collection.
Public banking is always free, but private banking is a costly solution averagely cost $2,000 once and $120 per year. And it feels more if you don’t have any potential patient in your family.
Cord blood can be used to treat range of diseases, but in estimation it is less than 0.5% chances that your child will ever need that. According to American Academy of Paediatrics (AAP) it has been used successfully to treat certain diseases but there isn't strong evidence to support cord blood banking. But it is always better option to store it in public banks as it will cut down the expenditures as well as may be used for research or any other deserving patient. In all cases it will eventually directly save the life or will cause to save the life indirectly.
If someone born with specific disease or in future encounter with it then it can be used for donor himself or can be used for effected sibling or another immediate relative who has a genetic condition as cord blood could be a good match for immediate family members.
In public cord blood banks, a plenty of stored cord blood has a vital chance of being used to help an immediate sick patient or for research purpose. On the other hand, private cord blood banks, eventually discard away blood that a family no longer financing.
Keeping in view all pros and cons, we strongly recommend to bank cord blood at least in public banks, as it will eventually save the someone’s life either directly or indirectly through research on your donated cord blood.