There is often confusion over who can use cord blood stem cells in treatment — the baby they were collected from or a sibling? The short answer is both, but it very much depends on the condition being treated. And it’s ultimately the treating physician’s decision. Recently, a mom who banked her son’s cord blood with ViaCord and used it in a transplant to help treat another son’s leukemia sat down with Rosie Pope and shared her story.
Today’s guest post was written by Sarah Hughes, a mother of two and a preeclampsia survivor. In honor of Preeclampsia Awareness Month, Sarah has been kind enough to share her story. We want to thank Sarah for taking the time to help spread the word about this life-threatening condition that so many know nothing about. Here is her story…
During my pregnancy I researched all things baby. From the top of the line, safest car seats to what type of wheels I wanted on my stroller. I spent hours reciting my soon to be baby’s boy and girl name choices paired with my last name to be sure it fit well. What I didn’t research turned out to be the one thing that almost killed me…preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is a life-threatening disorder that occurs during pregnancy Read More
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……
For more than 15 years, ViaCord has been proud to provide families the option to privately store their newborn’s umbilical cord blood for potential use in a medical treatment. Over the years we’ve seen many families in need of a stem cell treatment turn to the cord blood stem cells they’ve banked with us. At the beginning of 2011, ViaCord released its 200th cord blood unit to help treat a child with cerebral palsy. This milestone gave us a chance to reflect on the advancements cord blood stem cells have made in medical applications over the past two decades – from being used to treat just one disease twenty years ago, to nearly 80 today; as well as being studied by scientists in the area of regenerative medicine. It also made us think of the faces, the hearts and the family stories behind the 200 number.
Let’s take a look back at some of the heartwarming ViaCord family stories from 2011…
Tasha Jock was just 20 years old when her 6-month-old daughter Madilynn, or Maddie, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on September 19, 2010. Maddie quickly began aggressive chemotherapy at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. One month after Maddie’s diagnosis, Tasha learned she was pregnant with her second child. With her first pregnancy, Tasha had heard and read about cord blood banking , but did not pursue preservation of Maddie’s cord blood because the cost seemed too high for “such an elective” service. When Tasha’s OB/GYN learned about Maddie’s condition during an appointment related to her second pregnancy, he recommended that Tasha enroll in ViaCord’s Sibling Connection Program.
At that critical and vulnerable point in Maddie’s treatment, Tasha felt a rush of hope and was grateful to have the option to save her son’s cord blood stem cells – a medical resource that could potentially be used in the future to help treat Maddie. Tasha welcomed Liam into the world on June 27, 2011. By that time, Maddie had responded well to eight months of chemotherapy. Given Maddie’s positive response to chemotherapy, her oncologists do not plan to make use of Liam’s cord blood in the immediate future. But, that does not make Tasha any less passionate about encouraging other parents to save their child’s cord blood.