In recent years you might have heard about the use of stem cells in medicine. Despite the news coverage, it can be a bit difficult to understand how stem cell therapy works and when it can be used. We’re here to help.
What are stem cells?
Unlike any other cell in the body, stem cells have a unique ability to develop into different cell types. They are able to repair or replace damaged or diseased cells, making them a valuable resource for medical treatments and research.
How do I access stem cells?
Stem cells used in today’s medical treatments come from one of three sources: umbilical cord blood, bone marrow and peripheral blood.
Researchers continue to probe for new possibilities using cord blood stem cells (a top reason why families bank). With their instant availability and proven usefulness in helping treat a number of diseases today, cord blood stem cells have become a valuable medical resource for doctors. Recently, the Mayo Clinic announced a Phase 1 Clinical Trial that will look at the safety and feasibility of using a newborn’s own umbilical cord blood stem cells as a potential additional treatment for the management of hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS). This marks the first stem cell clinical trial for pediatric congenital heart disease in the United States.
HLHS – A Challenging Road to Travel
Hypoplastic left heart syndrome has long been considered one of cardiology’s most challenging congenital heart defects. According to the Centers for Disease and Prevention Center approximately 1000 babies (1 out of every 4,350) are born each year in the US with the condition.1 In HLHS newborns are born with severely underdeveloped structures on the left side of the heart. This results in the Continue reading
In the midst of learning about their daughter’s disease, Megan found out she was expecting again. Although it was a suprise, she and her husband, Nick, knew this pregnancy was meant to be – a precious gift with a big purpose. Her newborn’s cord blood stem cells could potentially be used in a treatment someday for their daughter. Megan has been kind enough to share her family’s story with us, and we’re thankful to be a part of it.
This is their story told by Megan……
On a quest to learn more about cord blood banking, but short on time? You’re in the right place. There’s a lot of information out there for busy parents-to-be to digest. That’s why we put together a list of quick links to take you directly to the information you care most about.
Your first two trimesters have come and gone and now the third trimester is underway – which may feel more like the last leg of a marathon! The prospect of meeting your little one can finally be seen in the distance and it’s normal to feel both excited and nervous. During this time it’s important to continue your prenatal visits and ask questions.
Getting answers to the questions below will help ensure you feel comfortable and confident about the last twelve weeks of your pregnancy. Bring a printed copy with you to your next appointment!
Second Trimester means new questions about your growing baby. One of the most exciting questions you’ll get the answer to (if you so desire) is ‘What is the sex of my baby?’ There are also a lot of health related questions for mom-to-be that are important to address.
Like we did in a recent post for the first trimester of pregnancy, we’ve put together a list of helpful questions to ask your doctor or midwife. These questions are meant to help guide discussions and make you feel comfortable and well informed. Don’t forget to print them before you go!
At ViaCord we talk to expecting parents every day and understand how exciting pregnancy can be. We also understand that a positive sign on a pregnancy test means a million questions. Rest assured we’ve got you covered with a list of useful questions to help navigate through your first trimester doctor appointments.
Our printable version makes it easy to grab the questions and go – no worries about forgetting to ask anything (pesky pregnancy brain!).You’ll leave feeling well-informed and confident in what to expect during this special time.
At ViaCord we already know the amazing power of cord blood. And with an estimated one million cord blood units stored1, its clear parents around the world are catching on too.
If you’re reading this post, you’re probably considering cord blood banking for your family. To help with your decision making, we’ve created a series of easy to read (and share) infographics that shed light on the most commonly asked questions and break it all down into simple bites of information.
Take a look below, and find out for yourself why cord blood is so awesome.
Throughout September thousands of feet across the country have been hitting the pavement with one goal in sight – walk/run ONE MILLION MILES. Why? Because every step taken will help raise money for childhood cancer research through Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation’s (ALSF) ‘Million Mile Run’. With so many lives affected by this devastating disease, including some ViaCord families, we were both excited and honored to come together as Team ViaCord to contribute as many miles as possible!
Alex’s Legendary Lemonade Stand Is Born
At 4-years-old Alexandra “Alex” Scott was a girl on a mission to help find a cure for all childhood cancers. A cancer patient herself, diagnosed shortly before her first birthday with neuroblastoma, Alex told her parents she wanted to raise one million dollars for the cause. How did she plan to do this? The best way a kid knows how – with a lemonade stand in her front yard, of course! In 2004, when Alex sadly lost her battle with cancer at age 8, the foundation bearing her name
pledged to carry on her dream of finding a cure through raising funds for research. The ‘Million Mile Run’ was created specially in support of September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
There’s something refreshing and natural about talking all things pregnancy with other expecting moms. Suddenly strangers can become friends and also your greatest cheerleaders throughout this unique journey. BabyCenter, an online community for expecting moms, is well known for being the home of support for millions of expectant moms. From providing educational resources to fostering smaller communities within, BabyCenter is the place to be for mommies-to-be.