Cord blood contains unique cells called hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) that can be used to treat genetic, metabolic and immune system disorders, as well as blood cancers.²

  Years ago, the medical community didn’t know the value of a newborn baby’s umbilical cord blood. It was thrown away with the placenta after birth. Now, we know the potential life saving benefits of umbilical cord blood; for use by the person it comes from, family members, and the general public. 

Have you ever thought of what kind of childbirth you’d like to have? In one study about childbirth choices, almost half of women say they know what kind of childbirth they want before pregnancy.² Often these choices are influenced by friends and family, social conditioning, and exposure to birth information online, on TV or in movies. Some of these Mamas have thought about their preferred birth place, types of childbirth providers, pain control methods, and medical interventions commonly used in birth practices. You may have had thoughts about this too or imagined the type of childbirth you’d like to have.

1/700 babies are born with Down Syndrome in the United States.²

March 21st was World Down Syndrome Day; a special day marked to bring awareness to the joys and unique challenges of raising a child with Down Syndrome. The date of the 21st is chosen because the genetic disorder is characterized by an extra copy of chromosome 21; also called Trisomy 21.

3% of infants in the U.S. are born with birth defects.¹ If you’re thinking about becoming pregnant or just found out that you’re pregnant, you may also be thinking about birth defects. January is Birth Defects Awareness Month so it’s a good time to discuss the basics and learn how they occur. Knowing the risk factors can help reduce your baby’s risk of developing a birth defect in the womb.

High blood sugar around the time of conception and throughout pregnancy increases risks of:  birth defects, still birth, preterm birth, c-sections, and the baby developing obesity and diabetes later in life.¹

What is Gestational Diabetes?

November is American Diabetes Month and a great time to put a spotlight on diabetes during pregnancy, which is a rising trend in the United States. In the United States, gestational diabetes (diabetes developed during pregnancy) has increased by 56% from 2000-2010.¹

Around the world, 1 out of 700 babies are born with cleft lip and/or cleft palate.² July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month, a time to bring focus on the special challenges and treatment of babies born with orofacial malformations like cleft lip or palate. Around the world, 1 out of 700 babies are born with cleft.²

Since 1988, greater than 35,000 people have received umbilical cord blood for the correction of metabolic, malignant and genetic disorders.¹ As you approach your baby’s due date, it is your medical provider’s role to discuss the option of banking your baby’s cord blood after birth. You might be wondering what this is and what are the benefits to your family or others.

Black women are three times more likely to die of pregnancy related causes than white women.¹

What Factors Affect Black Maternal Mortality Rates?

April 11-17 is black maternal health week. It’s an inadequate window of time where there is an acute lens focused on the healthcare disparities that black women experience during pregnancy and postpartum.

Birth defects affect babies all over the world.   A birth defect is a structural change to a baby’s body part, inside or outside the body. 

What Causes Birth Defects?

Birth defects happen as a result of: genetics, infection, exposure to an environmental toxin like radiation, or exposure to an internal toxin, like drugs, medication, alcohol, or smoking. They can also happen as a result of poor diet (low in folic acid) or uncontrolled blood sugar (Diabetes diagnosis or chronic high blood sugar).  

Every woman carries the risk of having a baby with a birth defect. This is called a background risk. The background risk for every woman is 3-5%. Yet, every woman can be proactive in reducing additional risk to her baby.