Cord blood banking saves the stem-cell-rich blood and tissue from the umbilical cord or placenta after childbirth. Doctors use these stem cells in lifesaving medical treatments for conditions like cancer or immune disorders. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best cord blood banks in Buffalo to find the most right storage facility for you.
Cord blood banking is becoming an increasingly common practice for Buffalo residents. With around 230,000 babies born in New York state each year, more and more people are looking to preserve stem-cell-rich umbilical cord blood and tissue.
Growing families in neighborhoods like Elmwood Strip, Williamsville and Eggertsville often choose to store umbilical cord blood or tissue, allowing them to use the stem cells inside to treat serious illnesses.
Some of the illnesses treatable with cord blood include:
Sickle cell anemia
In fact, cord blood can treat as many as 70 diseases, possibly providing you with a safety net if you or your family fall ill.
Cord blood banking pros and cons
There are some pros and cons to storing cord blood, as shown below:
This can potentially save a life if you or a loved one suffers from one of the illnesses treatable with cord blood.
If your family remains healthy, you may never need the cord blood.
A private cord blood bank gives long-term access to your cord blood and the stem cells it contains.
Saving cord blood can be expensive, particularly with multiple births.
The medical community is making advancements with each passing year, so even more treatments may be available in the future.
There are only a limited number of conditions that cord blood can treat.
Storing your cord blood in a public bank helps strangers that may not otherwise have access. This benefit is even more significant if you’re part of a genetic minority.
Genetic conditions can't be treated with cord blood.
How is cord blood stored?
If you choose to have your cord blood banked in Buffalo, your obstetrician or a hospital staff member will collect the umbilical cord blood and tissue after the birth of your child.
The cord blood is then cryogenically frozen in a special facility to preserve it until you have use of it. At that time, it can be thawed out and used in any number of medical treatments.
You can choose to store your cord blood in a public or private bank in Buffalo.
Public cord blood banks are free to use, but your cord blood is considered a donation and is no longer owned by your family. It can be used by anyone in need, as long as they have a matching blood type. This storage method is altruistic and greatly helps those in need in the Buffalo area.
If you want to save the cord blood until your family needs it, you'll need to work with a private cord blood bank in Buffalo. This usually requires an upfront fee and a monthly storage fee. One of the downsides of this method is that your cord blood may be wasted and thrown away if you never need it.
The initial, one-time cost of cord blood banking in Buffalo ranges from $1,500 to $4,000. This covers the cost of transport, processing and testing and can often be paid in monthly installments to keep costs low.
There's usually an annual storage fee of around $200 as well. Sometimes these fees are included in your initial payment if you prefer to pay upfront.
A few things may increase the cost of cord blood banking in Buffalo:
If you're having twins or triplets, you'll have more cord blood to store and higher costs as a result.
You can choose to store umbilical cord or placenta tissue as well for use with other medical treatments.
Who can use cord blood?
Cord blood doesn't just benefit the mother and child. If you choose a private cord blood bank, any member of your immediate or extended family that’s a match can benefit as well.
If you donate to a public cord blood bank in Buffalo, you can help other people in Buffalo get the medical treatment they need. Your hospital may work with local public cord blood banks, so ask in advance if you want to donate your cord blood.
Americord offers private cord blood and tissue storage for future medical use. New parents in New York are satisfied with the services provided by Americord and report that it was the most affordable option for cord blood banking. Check the company’s website for detailed pricing and other helpful information.