- Photo by iwillbehomesoon JP Photography posted on Flickr 29Jun12. Permissions.
As the world recovers from the breathtaking display of London’s closing ceremonies, so too are athletes recovering from their participation in the 2012 Olympic Games. While some sports may be more physically demanding than others, all athletes are put under tremendous mental and physical pressure, and even the best trained, most hardened athletes need to take time to heal their bodies after competing at the world’s highest level. Even Kerri Walsh, who won her 3rd Olympic beach volleyball gold and became one of the most dominant Olympic athletes along with perennial teammate Misty May-Trainer, took to Twitter immediately post-match, uploading images of herself soaking in an ice bath to help her body heal.
Many athletes take traditional approaches like Kerri, but as science and technology continue to progress, athletes are venturing into more unconventional methods like stem cell treatments, cryo chambers, and acupuncture:
In celebration of July being Cord Blood Awareness Month, ViaCord is giving away a free cord blood banking service to one expecting family. Recognized by the National Health Information Center (NHIC), July is all about raising awareness and educating parents about the value that cord blood has in stem cell treatments and research.
After birth, a baby’s umbilical cord is clamped and cut before it is generally disposed of as medical waste. For many families, they may have never considered cord blood banking, whether it’s a donation to a public bank or by storing it in a private bank. Cord Blood Awareness Month is meant to help educate parents on this choice and the benefits that cord blood stem cells could provide for their child or a sibling. For example, cord blood stem cells are shown to be a better source of stem cells for use in transplants than bone marrow and can be used to treat nearly 80-life threatening disease.
According to Merriam-Webster the definition of awareness is “having or showing realization, perception, or knowledge.” That’s precisely the goal of this month, July – Cord Blood Awareness month – to help families gain knowledge about the value of cord blood stem cells and realize how saving these precious cells could potentially benefit a family.
You may think learning about cord blood requires a science background or is a time consuming process. It’s quite the contrary, however. When it comes to learning about cord blood, there are really two important things to know: Continue reading
Photo from askmissa.com
ViaCord recently had the honor of teaming up with Trueheart Events and many other fabulous organizations to benefit the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. On Saturday, June 2, 2012, over one hundred deserving children and their families from Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the Starlight Children’s Foundation and the Children’s Rare Disease Network attended The Wonderland Suite, an Alice & Wonderland themed event where there were many fun activities, giving celebrities, live entertainment and delicious food.
ViaCord hosted the Children’s Accessories Lounge: a place where stars and children were able to work with the ViaCord style team to make beaded bracelets, adorn themselves with feathered hair Continue reading
Over the past two decades the science of cord blood stem cell medicine has made incredible progress. To think in1988 only one condition was treatable using cord blood stem cells, and today they can be used in the treatment of nearly 80 life-threatening diseases. Moreover, cord blood stems cells have already been used to help treat and give hope to nearly 25,000 patients around the globe. 1
Advancing uses for cord blood stem cells is just the beginning. Today, families can also collect and save stem cells from the surrounding umbilical cord tissue+– an option ViaCord is proud to offer expecting families. These tissue-derived stem cells have “regenerating” properties and laboratory research in the last few years has demonstrated their potential to treat additional diseases like Parkinson’s 2, stroke 3, & type 1 diabetes.4
If you’ve gone through a pregnancy or plan to someday, you know physical changes are a big part of the experience. Some are anticipated; others may have never crossed your mind. Commonly discussed topics around pregnancy-related physical changes include, swollen hands and feet, fatigue, and even how mom’s hair will grow thick and shiny over the next months. The topics that rarely make it to the forefront of conversation, including pelvic floor dysfunction and related bladder and bowel issues, are the ones that many mothers actually ‘really wish they had known about’ beforehand.
Thanks to the public health and awareness campaign, Share MayFlowers, expecting mothers have a place they can turn to as a resource on such topics. Share MayFlowers’ mission is to educate women and spark conversation about health issues – primarily on the under discussed topics of female pelvic and perinatal health – that seem to take a back seat during this unique time in a woman’s life.
According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of a Mother is: a female parent. 1 Now we all know that mothers are more than simply ‘female parents’. They are nurturers, leaders, role models, and the best hug-givers in the world! Perhaps the definition in print is so brief because there are so many, or rather too many, ways to define what a Mother is.
To honor Mother’s Day this year we thought it would be fun to flip the tables. Instead of asking others what mom means to them, we’ve asked moms to tell us what their role of mother means to them. And who better to ask than our very own ViaCord employees who are mothers, of course! Let’s see what they had to say:
Everyday expecting families reach out to ViaCord to talk cord blood. In our conversations that cover everything from the value of storing cord blood stem cells to how cord blood is collected at the hospital and then processed in our laboratory, one common question we hear is, “How long does cord blood last? Does it ever expire?” Families want to know that when they choose to bank their baby’s cord blood, if it’s ever needed – even years down the road – that their frozen cord blood will offer a viable treatment option.
The quick answer: to date, there is no evidence that it will ever expire. 1
The most comprehensive research on this topic comes from Dr. Hal Broxmeyer, a pioneering cord blood scientist and renowned microbiologist and immunologist, who has studied cord blood for more than two decades. More specifically, in 2003 his team published a pivotal study that showed cord blood units were still viable 15 years Continue reading
Navigate the cord blood stem cell world with this glossary of terms
Understanding all the words that are a part of the cord blood stem cell world can be challenging. Sometimes, it can feel like you need a medical dictionary with you when trying to read an article or have a conversation on the topic. While we normally try to define terms within our blogs, we’re creating a one-stop-blog for most of your cord blood stem cell terminology needs. We hope you find it helpful as you explore other places for information on these valuable stem cells.
Breaking down the most common terms
Cord blood: Umbilical cord blood, or cord blood, is the blood remaining in the umbilical cord after a baby is born. Cord blood contains a variety of cells including red blood cells, white blood cells, plasma, platelets and is also rich in hematopoietic stem cells. Read more about cord blood here >>
Cord blood gets a lot of attention for its enormous potential. While that’s understandable – researchers are continually pursuing potential new medical applications using cord blood stem cells to treat everything from diabetes to cerebral palsy – it’s important to remember that these cells are also saving lives today, as a proven therapy for dozens of diseases and disorders.
One of these is Fanconi anemia, an inherited blood disorder that interferes with the body’s ability to make blood cells.
More specifically, Fanconi anemia stops the body’s bone marrow from making enough blood cells and can also cause it to make defective cells. Since blood cells perform some of the body’s most important functions – like carrying oxygen, fixing injuries and fighting infections – this can cause severe health problems.