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Information for cord blood donors

Background

Cord blood is one of the richest sources of blood forming stem cells and is discarded after childbirth. For over two decades these cells have been used to treat blood cancers, thalassemia and other blood diseases. Cord blood stem cells are being extensively used to treat children and young adults (weighing less than 40 kgs) because of the following advantages:

  • Readily available for use – unlike a registry of names and HLA types.
  • Has a long shelf life of over 24 years.
  • Though preferable, the match need not be 100%.
  • Very low incidence of complications like rejections and immune reactions.

Cord Blood is matched by HLA typing (Human Leucocyte Antigen). Only 30% of children with curable blood disorders are able to find a match within the family and the other 70% of children need to look for a match outside. HLA matching is ethnicity dependent and the chance of an Indian finding a match in other parts of the world is less than 10%. Even if lucky enough to find one, it will cost approximately USD 40,000 to import the same. Annually 20 million babies are born in India and equal numbers of cord blood resources are being discarded. An Indian Public Cord Blood Bank like Jeevan can increase the chance of finding a match to over 60% and also make it available free of any cost to those who cannot afford to reimburse the processing cost.

Procedures

Step 1

  • Enrolment Form to be filled in and reviewed.
  • Suitability for cord blood collection is ascertained.

Step 2

  • Cord blood collection.

Umbilical cord blood will be collected after the baby is delivered and after the cord is clamped and cut. It is a safe, simple and aseptic process. Collecting cord blood will not in any way harm you or your baby. Once collected, the bag is then sealed, labelled and sent to Jeevan Public Cord Blood Bank for further processing and testing. If, for some reason, it is not suitable for banking it will be discarded.

Testing

A sample of your blood will be collected any time after the onset of labour. If the cord blood unit qualifies for banking, your blood and your baby’s cord blood will be tested for a variety of genetic conditions and infectious agents including HIV and Hepatitis.

Other information

There is no cost to you for participating in this public cord blood banking program.

If we become aware of any results that are of importance to your or your baby’s health we will notify you. To better interpret and understand the results of such studies or tests, it may be necessary to contact you for follow-up testing. All donor and recipient records are strictly confidential.

When your baby’s cord blood unit information is shared with potential transplant centres, no personally identifying information will be shared. Private information will be held securely by us. If there is a change in your baby’s health, Jeevan Public Cord Blood Bank would like to know about it, as it may affect the suitability of the unit for transplantation.
If you need any clarification, please call 89399 99214 or 97908 97918 between 8.00 am and 6.00 pm or email to stemcell@jeevan.org

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