What is Cord Blood Banking?

Cord blood banking is simply the process of collecting cord blood and then storing the stem cells in a bank for use at a later date. Upstate Cord Blood Bank's laboratory is held to high standards to ensure the quality of the cord blood units we are storing within our facility. Quality units = more patients treated!

What Cord Blood Banking Can Do

Cord blood transplants are used to treat more than 80 diseases such as leukemia and other blood cancers, inherited diseases, and immune system diseases. Choosing to donate your cord blood will benefit people locally as well as around the world who are waiting for lifesaving treatments. Research is continuing to show potential uses of cord blood for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and degenerative disease.

Cord Blood Banking Myths and Facts

There are some misconceptions with cord blood banking. Here are a few facts we hope will clear up some questions you may have about donating or storing your baby’s cord blood.

Cord blood banking does not:

  • Contain embryonic stem cells
  • Interfere with the delivery process
  • Take blood directly from your baby
  • Cause any harm or pain to the mother or baby

MYTH: Collecting cord blood from my baby removes valuable stem cells.

FACT: When your baby is delivered and the umbilical cord is clamped and cut, there is no more blood going to your baby from the placenta. Once the placenta is delivered, the umbilical cord is usually thrown away as medical waste.

MYTH: It is painful to donate cord blood.

FACT: There is no pain or harm to the mother or her baby during cord blood collection and it does not interfere with the normal birthing experience.

MYTH: Cord blood cells are the same as embryonic cells.

FACT: Cord blood cells are NOT the same as embryonic cells. There is no embryonic tissue in the cord blood. However, hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) are found in the cord blood, bone marrow and peripheral blood, which makes using the placenta and cord blood clinically useful. These cells are what is used in lifesaving treatment.

MYTH: Delayed cord clamping is not possible during cord blood removal.

FACT: Delayed cord clamping (DCC) is possible with cord blood removal. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends DCC for 30-60 seconds. Some studies have found DCC is helpful for iron deficiency anemia in full-term male infants.

MYTH: Cord blood banking costs too much, especially if my family may never need it.

FACT: There are two options to cord blood banking. You can either donate your baby’s cord blood to a public bank or store it in a family bank. Donating your baby’s cord blood to a public bank is free. Storing your baby’s cord blood in a family bank does come with an initial processing fee, then a yearly storage fee thereafter. The processed and stored cord blood can be saved for a maximum of 23 years.

Cord Blood Banking FAQs

Below you will find answers to questions we frequently receive from people interested in donating or storing cord blood at Upstate Cord Blood Bank.

Go to FAQs - (PDF)

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The use of cord blood is in high demand due to the great potential that stem cells have for treating many life-threatening diseases. Choosing to donate your cord blood with Upstate Cord Blood Bank can have a significant impact.

Be a hero, and make the decision to bank your baby’s cord blood for public or personal use. Before your 36th week of pregnancy, please speak with your doctor about banking. For more information, please contact the Upstate Cord Blood Bank at (315) 492-2600.