Published By : 02 Mar 2016 | Published By : QYRESEARCH
The concept, on paper, is simple enough. People can store umbilical cord blood in banks for later use. And these uses are extremely critical. Cord blood is used in the treatment of a myriad genetic disorders as well as diseases related to blood generation, or hematopoiesis. But exactly how useful is cord blood in the ever-changing medical landscape, and what does it take to store cord blood for years to come? The answers are slowly being revealed by medical professionals, and not all of them are positive for the global market for cord blood banks.
Warnings by Regulatory Agencies Against Private Cord Blood Banks
The American Academy of Pediatrics has previously stated that they consider it unfeasible to utilize private cord blood banks for storage purposes and should essentially be used only when there is a higher chance of a family member falling ill to the relevant diseases. In fact, they continued on to state that merely one in 200,000 patients may ever actually use their own cord blood to get treated. Only fourteen procedures have been performed so far, where the cord blood of a patient was used on himself or herself, as stated by the Institute of Medicine. Even the AMA has made statements which encourage families to go forward with private cord blood banks where there is a fully known predisposition to genetic or blood-related illnesses. On the other hand, most of the medical procedures where cord blood has successfully been used have utilized the cord blood from public banks, not just because they are relatively cheaper, but also because it is actually very rare for a person to need his or her own cord blood for treatment.
A Market Restricted by Policies
The global market for cord blood banks is further hindered by the major fact that not enough people are using this option. There is currently a shortage of cord blood around the world and patients are either not aware of cord blood storage, or find the procedure too expensive. While this could be mitigated by the increasing amount of disposable income, there is still the problem of the regulatory pressure over the storage and use of cord blood. Only time can help understand the complete usefulness of cord blood. Till then, research and development efforts prevail at full swing.