Adults weren’t considered for cord-blood transplants until recently because they require two cords for their bigger bodies.Children on the other hand needed just a single cord.

Now the question which comes into your mind is, What is cord-blood transplant all about?
Parents donate baby’s umbilical cord to a public registry,  blood from the cord is frozen and stored.

A patient who is suffering from leukemia , lymphoma or other severe diseases receive chemotherapy or radiotherapy.These treatments kill cancer cells but impairs the defense system of the body.Thus the person is viable to further attacks by cancers.

Such patients need cord blood transplants because transplanted cells replace the diseased cells and other immune-system cells with healthy cells.

3 kinds of transplants include :
a) Bone marrow transplants

b) Adult stem cell transplants

c) Cord blood stem cell transplants.

The 3rd being most advantageous because of lesser stem cells their immune systems are naive.

Renetta Waupoose, 23 years old is the first adult blood cancer patient to be successfully treated using cord-blood transplants at UW Hospitals. She belonged to the ethnic minority community and so needed cord-blood procedures as adult donors are rare in their population.

At first blood transplants from 2 cords seemed to be very risky. But studies by experts from UW Hospitals and other medical centers showed this to be absolutely safe. Waupoose who was long suffering from leukemia was the first patient to receive transplants from 2 cords. Finally she is cured and she feels happy about it.

“I was scared,” she said last week, after receiving the cells from the umbilical cords of two babies in October. But now, “I feel optimistic about what’s going to happen to me.”

The Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee plans to start offering the transplants soon.

Source:Wisconsin State Journal