Myths and Facts about Cord Blood

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Some parents choose to remove cord blood after giving birth. However, in recent years some parents believe that cord blood has many benefits in the future. So they decided to save cord blood in a special bank. One of the benefits obtained from cord blood is believed to be able to treat various diseases suffered by someone. Based on the results of the study, the ability to treat is caused by cells that develop in cord blood. If you decide to save cord blood in the bank, you should know the myths and facts of cord blood

Myth: If a child is sick, he cannot use his own cord blood.

Fact: Cord blood can be used to treat diseases themselves. However, it depends on the disease that is suffering from it. If the disease is genetic, you should not use your own cord blood but use cord blood of other siblings. Conversely, if your child experiences a disease caused by environmental factors, it is highly recommended that he or she own his umbilical cord to treat it. For example for cancer. Reporting from the National Center for Biotechnology Information, 5 to 10 percent of cancers are caused by genetic factors. While the biggest cause of cancer is 90 to 95 percent due to environmental factors.

Myth: Cord blood can only treat blood disorders

Fact: Based on the results of research that umbilical cord blood is able to treat more than 8 types of diseases including leukemia, lymphoma and neuroblastoma. Not only that, based on the results of clinical trials of cord blood can also treat patients who experience diabetes, autism, and cerebral palsy.

Myth: If someone can always find a bone marrow donor in the future.

Fact: There are many advantages to using stem cells from the umbilical cord compared to bone marrow. Bone marrow stem cell extraction using invasive processes while collecting cord blood is not through an invasive process and does not cause pain and minimal risk to the mother and child. In addition, cord blood minimizes the risk of Gravt Vs Host Disease (GvHD) for those who suffer from Autologus transplants compared to those with marrow transplastation. GvHD is the most common complication where immune cells from donors attack the recipient’s own tissue. This situation usually arises when transplant donors and transplant recipients are different people.

Myth: Taking cord blood can endanger the mother and child during labor.

Fact: Taking cord blood is relatively easy and done by your obstetrician. This retrieval process has no effect on the birth process itself and can be done in normal or caesarean delivery. The process of getting the umbilical cord is also not harmful and painful for the mother and child. Myth: All cord blood banks are the same. Fact: Not all banks from the umbilical cord are the same. Each bank varies to store one’s cord blood. If you decide to save the umbilical cord blood at the bank, you should look for the quality of the bank, starting from how the bank’s experience has kept cord blood to what type of technology it uses.

Stem Cells Process

The blood in the newborn’s umbilical cord is not just any blood. Since the 1970s, medical research has found that blood in the umbilical cord is rich in stem cells. What are stem cells? Stem cells are the parent of all cells in the body. These cells have not differentiated and have very high potential to develop into many different types of cells in the body. For example, it can be triggered to grow into blood-forming cells, heart muscle cells, nerve cells, immune system, skin tissue, bones, endocrine organs and so on. Source of stem cells There are two types of stem cells. First, embryonic stem cells are taken from the inner cell mass of a blastocyst (an embryo consisting of 50-150 cells, about the 5th day after fertilization), which is usually obtained from the remaining embryos that are not used in IVF (in vitro fertilization). “Second, adult stem cells are a collection of cells that are in tissues, blood, bone marrow, brain, liver, pancreas, for example,” explained Dr. Dr Rini Purnamasari SpA (K) from Kebayoran Baru Gandaria Hospital.

Cord Blood

Well, one source of stem cells is cord blood. “There is a total of 40-120 mL of blood coming from veins (veins). Then, cord blood was isolated and further processed to produce adult stem cells, “he explained. Retrieval Requirements According to Dr. Rini, there are some prerequisites that must be fulfilled by the mother when cord blood stem cell retrieval, including a term pregnancy, not having certain diseases, is also not a difficult labor. “There are also blood banks that do not allow their clients to have HIV-AIDS,” said Dr. Prima Progestian SpOG from Brawijaya Hospital Woman & Children. How to take To get this cord blood cell, Dr. Rini said there are two ways: In Utero. Taking cord blood with the placenta is still in the womb. That is, after the baby is born, the umbilical cord is cut. Then, the umbilical cord that is still attached to the placenta is extended out of the uterus and blood is flowed through a sterile needle. After the process is complete, the placenta is removed.

Ex. Utero.

It is done on the placenta that has been removed from the uterus. That is, after the baby is born, the umbilical cord is clamped and cut. A moment later, the placenta was removed from the womb and placed on a special table. Then, cord blood is channeled into a sterile bag through a sterile needle. Generally this collection process is short. Followed by Dr. Prima, the umbilical cord that was to be taken by blood was cleaned with antiseptic. Then, the umbilical cord is inserted into a sterile needle that drains blood into the blood bag. “Safe, not sick, the procedure is fast and has no risk for the mother and baby. Blood collection is usually as much as 2 blood bags, “added Dr. Nani Permadhi MBA-HCA, StemCord Indonesia Medical Director.


After cord blood was collected, “The amount of blood ranging from 40-120 mL was taken to the laboratory and the isolation process was carried out so that it produced only 2 mL stem cells. This result is then stored in the cord blood bank, “continued Dr. Rini. Dr. Nani added that StemCord sent the blood bag safely – packed at room temperature – to a laboratory in Singapore, which was sent in less than 36 hours. After that, it is processed in strict conditions. Then, it is frozen in liquid nitrogen with a temperature of – 180 degrees Celsius. Apparently, cord blood stem cells during storage in liquid nitrogen temperatures can be stored indefinitely. According to Dr. Rini, cord blood stem cells can be stored for up to 17 years.


How to use? “If cord blood stem cells are needed, thawing is carried out. Before doing thawing, the process of requesting the doctor who will do the transplant begins. Matched first between donor and stem cell recipients, tests were also conducted on the content of stored stem cells, and so on, “explained Dr. Rini. Benefits Until now blood stem cells have been used to restore blood diseases such as hematology-oncology (blood-cancer), cancer of white blood cells (leukemia), aplastic anemia, for example thalassemia, “said Dr. Rini. Dr. Nani added, the types of diseases that can be overcome with these cord stem cells include acute leukemia, chronic leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, Stem Cell Disorders, Congenital (Inherited) Immune System Disorders, Other Inherited Disorders, Inherited Platelet Abnormalities, Plasma Cell Disorders, and autoimmune diseases. “Even in the future – now still in the research stage – these stem cells can be applied in dealing with other disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Cerebral Palsi, Parkinson’s, stroke and autoimmune diseases such as lupus,” Dr. Nani concluded

Cord Blood Infomation

1. Anti-Rubella IgG and Anti-CMV IgM Positive can it store stem cells?

Yes, because this can happen because of having had rubella and has been cured or has been in the anti rubella vaccine as long as it does not affect the results of the baby’s blood test.

2. How much cord blood should be collected?

The amount of cord blood taken is normally around 80-90ml, but also varies between 30-150ml. However, the most important is the number of stem cells found in cord blood. The number of stem cells collected on average ranges from 400-900 million nucleic cells.

3. Cellcare, if later when I want to use my blood is damaged, what do I get from cellsafe? Cellsafe will find stem cells that are suitable for your child and reimburse for 5x the fees paid.

4. If I have paid the package payment and it turns out my blood can’t be saved, can I get a refund?

The amount of money returned if there is a client whose blood has been entered into a laboratory process, but apparently does not meet the requirements for cord blood storage, then cellsafe will return the remaining DP money in administrative fees.

5. What should be done if the total HB HBc maternal blood count is positive?  

The lab recommends after 6 months to check the baby by testing HBs Ag and Anti HBs (HBs Ab). If the results on testing the blood of a Hepatitis B negative baby, the baby’s cord blood can be stored.

6. What will happen if the total volume of cord blood stem cells collected is not enough / less than the required volume?

If the number of nucleating cells is less than the specified standard of 200 million cells, we will inform this client and ask whether the storage is continued or not.

7. How long can the stem cells be stored?

As previously explained, maintenance / preservation of tissue using liquid nitrogen can last for an indefinite period of time (1). Based on the Directive from the New York Department of Health, there is no evidence to explain that storing cord blood stem cells with a temperature of -196 degrees Celsius is not in accordance with the procedures that apply in vitro, affecting survival or biological activity. Maintenance of crystals from cells of different types (such as sperm or egg cells) has been stored for more than 50 years. Recent reports indicate that cord blood / placental blood stem cells have been stored for a period of 15 years and remain active and maintain their quality to the engraft stage.

8. Is enough storage carried out only from the umbilical cord of one child?

Every genetic composition of each child is unique and therefore the siblings have a different HLA code. For the best results in stem cell transplants, HLA codes are needed that match 100% in addition to some suitable HLA samples. Therefore, the storage needs of each child’s cord blood when cord blood is used is needed. Storage of the child’s cord blood can also increase the likelihood of finding a match between family members.

9. Why should a mother’s blood test be done when I have a medical history from a doctor?

Medical check-ups throughout the body may have been done but infection in the mother can only be detected a few days before birth. Maternal blood tests need to be done with AABB standards in providing a 100% guarantee of contamination status in cord blood. Maternal Cord Blood Test must be performed where 100% accuracy is a test performed on cord blood itself. This is because not all antibodies (markers of infection in the disease indicate contamination), which may appear in cord blood.