There has been a lot of buzz around—and a number of athletes who have undergone—stem cell treatments for athletic injuries. With umbilical cord blood and umbilical cord tissue being a readily available source of stem cells, and an alternative to bone marrow stem cells, the question arises: could cord blood stem cells stored today in cord blood banks, one day be used to treat sports related injuries?
When our son, Patrick, was two years old, he was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. Therapists frequently tell me that he is the hardest worker they have had. He is very determined. As his parents, we are determined to try everything possible to help both of our boys succeed. When Patrick was three, we discovered that we were expecting another baby. My mother, who is a midwife, asked me if I was going to bank this child’s cord blood. She had attended a continuing education seminar that had talked about the benefits of cord blood banking and how they are doing a lot of research on using stem cells to treat Cerebral Palsy. We decided as a family to bank our 3rd child’s umbilical cord blood stem cells with Cryo-Cell International in the hope that they may eventually be able to be used for Patrick.
My name is Justin Fuller and I am a Senior Client Coordinator and Training Coordinator at Cryo-Cell International. I have been involved in the cord blood banking industry since 2008, and have seen it progress dramatically over the past several years; especially with regenerative therapies such as cerebral palsy.
My older sister was born with cerebral palsy, the leading disease that cord blood stem cells have been used to help treat for the past 20 years. She struggled when we were in childhood to do many of the simple things that other children took for granted, and many times all I wished I could do was change that.
I may not have been able to reverse her diagnosis, but I was able to do the next best thing. Educate her on the one time opportunity to capture lifesaving cord blood stem cells that could be used to help safeguard her family and two sons.