Cord blood can be a lifesaver for various individuals. It’s one reason cord blood banking has become popular now more than ever. But can cord blood treat leukemia?
Keep reading to know more.
Can Cord Blood Treat Leukemia?
Yes, cord blood can be used to cure leukemia through stem cell transplants. This type of treatment has been used since the early 1990s.
There are over 35,000 cord blood transplants performed around the world. However, most of these transplants were used to treat blood disorders, including leukemia.
In a study, researchers compared cord blood transplants and bone marrow transplants for patients with leukemia. Even though the two groups had significant survival after transplant, the patients who received cord blood transplants lived longer.
Furthermore, these patients were said to be less likely to relapse.
This is an ideal option if you don’t have a matched bone marrow. A cord transplant can offer the best chance for you to be cured of your blood cancer.
Why Cord Blood is a Good Option?
It has blood-forming stem cells. Cord blood is collected during childbirth. Parents can choose to donate it at birth. When they do, the cells are preserved and frozen in public cord blood banks.
The immune system of a baby isn’t fully developed. It means that a match isn’t needed between the recipient and the cord blood stem cells of the newborn.
Indeed, the cord blood immune system is malleable, it can still develop into a healthy immune system.
When it comes to cord blood transplants, it’s vital that the patients with leukemia must receive a transplant from a donor and not their own cord blood.
Children who develop leukemia were born with a certain defect. Thus, it’s not safe for them to be transplanted with their own cord blood. The reason for this is that their cord blood may carry the mutation for the said condition.
Can Umbilical Cord Blood Help with Cancer?
The umbilical cord can treat over 70 diseases, including leukemia. Thus, if you’re expecting, you can have the option to donate your cord blood or save it in case you or a family member may develop a chronic condition that can be treated by a cord blood transplant.
Most cord blood and placenta are discarded during childbirth. Thus, if you have the chance, make sure to consider donating or saving it.
Cord blood has a vital role in treating lymphoma, sickle cell anemia, and other life-threatening diseases. It’s one of the best sources of blood-forming cells utilized in transplants.
This can be a good option. However, not all patients can take advantage of it. It all depends on your needs.
The doctor will be the one to decide whether or not cord blood is the right treatment.
One great advantage of cord blood is that it doesn’t have to be an exact match to the recipient. Thus, if the patient has an uncommon tissue type, he/she can receive cord blood.
Because of how it is stored, it can be available to a patient who needs it immediately.
If you’re a new parent, you might consider saving your child’s cord blood. Here are your options:
Store in a private cord blood bank. Most babies are born healthy. This type of cord blood bank stores the blood for future use.
Donate to public cord blood. When you choose this option, you can’t use it if one of your family members would need it. Unfortunately, not all hospitals can collect this blood for storage. Hence, if you’re planning to donate it, you must decide a few months before giving birth and contact the public cord blood bank.
Read: Can stem cell cure MS?
What Diseases are Treatable with Cord blood?
Cord blood can treat various diseases. Here are some of them:
- Malignancies, such as leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease, soil tumors, etc.
- Blood disorders including histiocytosis, sickle cell anemia, etc.
- Metabolic disorders
Some children are receiving cord blood transplants to treat autism and cerebral palsy. In this situation, cord blood is used as regenerative medicine.
It’s not the same as in transplants. Cord blood stem in regenerative medicine is infused in the patient to stimulate the body’s repair system.
Can Cord Blood be Used for Bone Marrow?
Researchers have used stem cells from cord blood and bone marrow. In a cord blood transplant, the stem cells come from umbilical cord blood, which is the blood in the umbilical cord during childbirth. It can be frozen and stored.
Can cord blood treat leukemia? Yes, it can treat leukemia. But just because you have this medical condition, it doesn’t mean that a cord blood transplant is for you. It’ll be your doctor who will decide whether or not it is an ideal treatment for your situation.
Find out here if cord blood can help autism.