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What is Cord Blood Banking? How It Works

Cord blood banking in India has gained significant traction in recent years due to the growing awareness among parents about the potential benefits of preserving their child's umbilical cord blood.

When a baby is on the way, parents often talk about saving cord blood. But what does that mean, and how does it work? This guide will explain it all in simple terms. We'll start with how the blood is collected, then talk about storing it and how it could help with medical issues in the future. Let's learn about cord blood banking together to keep your family healthy.

What Is cord blood banking?

Cord blood banking is the collection and storage of your baby's umbilical cord blood following delivery. Cord blood is what remains inside your baby's umbilical cord after it is cut. Your baby's umbilical cord is clamped and severed soon after birth. The umbilical cord connects your baby and the placenta. The placenta grows in your uterus and provides food and oxygen to the developing fetus.

Cord blood banking is completely optional. Some parents decide to collect and store their baby's cord blood, while others do not. If you do not donate or save your baby's cord blood, it is discarded with the placenta. During a prenatal visit, your healthcare provider will usually discuss cord blood banking.

Stem cell preservation benefits are increasingly recognized as a valuable investment in health security.

What is cord blood?

Cord blood is the blood that remains inside your baby's umbilical cord following delivery. It is made up of red and white blood cells, platelets, and plasma, much like regular blood. It also contains a type of stem cell found in bone marrow that can boost the immune system. These cells are unique in that they can mature into various types of blood cells. Their ability to morph into different cells makes them valuable.

Stem cells can help treat a variety of diseases, including leukemia, genetic disorders, immune system diseases, and many others. Researchers discovered that cord blood can treat up to 80 diseases.

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Use of Umbilical cord blood

Cord blood contains potentially life-saving stem cells. People who require stem cell transplants benefit from your baby's cord blood. When stem cells are transplanted into those people, they help to generate new, healthy cells. Stem cell transplants support individuals with:

  • Cancers include leukemia and lymphoma.
  • Bone marrow diseases requiring transplantation.
  • Anemia is similar to sickle cell disease.
  • Some immune system disorders.

Researchers are examining how cord blood can help treat other life-threatening conditions such as Parkinson's disease and diabetes. These umbilical cord blood stem cells have been used in the treatment of numerous diseases, including leukemia, lymphoma, and certain genetic disorders.

Types of Umbilical Cord Blood Banking

Cord blood banks are classified into two types: public and private (or family). They differ in several ways.

Public cord blood banking

Think of public cord blood banks as massive donation centers. You are donating your baby's cord blood to help save a stranger's life. Most healthcare providers encourage you to donate cord blood to a public bank because it benefits others while posing no risk to you.

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Private cord blood banking

You can keep your baby's cord blood in a private blood bank. This ensures that only your family can access it. Private blood banks are beneficial to families who have a history of medical conditions that can be treated with stem cells. It's also useful if you have a family member who currently requires a stem cell transplant.

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Need of umbilical cord blood

Every hospital is different, but you should make your decision before the 34th week of pregnancy. Cord blood banking kits are not available at all hospitals, and some cord blood banks must send kits to the hospital on a regular basis. Before collection, you must fill out a consent form and answer several questions about your medical history. Furthermore, private banks will require you to pay the collection fee before delivering your baby.

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Questions to ask when choosing cord blood bank


There are several advantages to banking cord blood. The most common reasons why parents choose cord banking include:

  • Someone in need of a stem cell transplant could benefit from your baby's cord blood.
  • Private blood banking can assist someone in your family who requires a stem cell transplant.
  • Banking cord blood has no effect on either you or your baby.
  • It has no impact on labor or delivery.
  • Umbilical cord blood is thrown away. There is no risk or harm in donating to a public cord blood bank.

- Do you own your Lab?



In India, when you first sign up for cord blood banking, you can expect to pay around ₹70,000 to ₹1,10,000 initially. After that, there will be yearly payments ranging from ₹14,000 to ₹20,000. Private banks might have different plans available to fit your budget. The umbilical cord storage cost in India can vary depending on factors such as the facility, services included, and duration of storage.

- What are the cons of cord blood banking?

  • Costly: Cord blood banking involves significant initial and ongoing fees.
  • Limited Use: Its usefulness depends on specific health conditions, and the likelihood of needing it is low.
  • Evolving Technology: Advancements in medicine may make stored cord blood obsolete by the time it's needed.
  • Public vs. Private Debate: Choosing between public donation and private storage can be a dilemma.
  • Ethical Concerns: Some view it as exploiting parental fears and diverting resources.
  • Potential Risks: There's a slight risk of contamination or loss.


The risk is low to minimal, and the child will not be harmed because the collection does not occur while the cord connects the mother and child. The procedure is quick, painless, and noninvasive.

- Can I still bank cord blood if I have a genetic condition

The ability to bank cord blood when you have a genetic condition depends on several factors, including the specific condition you have and the policies of the cord blood bank. Some genetic conditions may not affect the viability of the cord blood for banking purposes, while others may raise concerns about the quality or usefulness of the stored blood.

It's important to consult with a healthcare professional or a representative from the cord blood bank to discuss your specific situation.

- Hair Restoration

A clinical trial is examining the use of umbilical cord blood stem cells in the treatment of genetic hair loss. A special serum made with "5% conditioned media of umbilical cord blood-derived stem cells containing various trophic factors that help alleviate hair loss" will be tested against a placebo-treated control group.

The cord blood banking in India is regulated by various guidelines and standards to ensure the quality and safety of stored cord blood units.

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