What is Cord Blood?

The blood within your newborn baby’s umbilical cord contains young stem cells that can renew themselves and become specialized. These cord blood stem cells have been proven in treatment to help children replace damaged blood cells with healthy ones and strengthen their immune systems. Cord blood banking is the process of collecting and storing these stem cells for potential medical use.

[Video] Cord Blood Banking: Understanding The Basics

Learning about cord blood banking shouldn't have to be confusing - or boring. Watch one of our stem cell experts who also happens to be a former RN and Labor & Delivery nurse, talk cord blood banking 101. She answers that questions every parent has about banking cord blood and ViaCord.

Why is cord blood special?

To date, 35,000 transplants have been performed using these amazing cells, and today cord blood is being used in clinical trials to help conditions once thought untreatable - like cerebral palsy and autism.04, 109 

For some families, the decision to bank their baby's cord blood has made a world of difference:

  • The Byrd Family - When baby Brayden was born, Tami and her husband banked his cord blood with ViaCord and used it in a transplant to help treat their first son, Blase's, leukemia. Watch Tami share her experience.

  • The Krebs Family - Brady's parents banked his cord blood thinking it could potentially be used to treat diabetes someday. Complications at birth took the family on a different path. Watch their inspiring story >>
To see more families share their experience using their banked cord blood, visit our Cord Blood 101 Videos page.

For a quick summary of all things that make cord blood awesome, check out our easy to read infographic.

Collecting cord blood - fast, simple and painless.

The collection of your baby’s cord blood happens the day your baby is born. After delivery it’s standard procedure for your doctor or midwife to clamp and cut the umbilical cord. Using ViaCord’s collection kit, they will then insert a needle into the cord to collect the remaining blood. Once the collection is complete, they will seal the bag, attach the pre-printed label with your family’s information, and place it in the collection kit. A medical courier will pick up the kit from your hospital room and transport it to ViaCord’s state-of-the-art lab and storage facility, where lab specialists will process the cord blood in preparation for long-term storage. 

To learn more about the about collection process -  including what our collection kit looks like inside -  visit our Collection & Transport page.

Our Dedicated Transplant Program for Siblings

ViaCord's Sibling Connection Program, a dedicated transplant program for siblings, was designed to help families in need of a stem cell transplant. This program provides ViaCord's cord blood banking services at no cost to expecting parents. A family with a child with an established diagnosis of a disease that is currently treatable with sibling cord blood may be eligible.