Most parents prepare for the birth of their first child by choosing a car seat, getting the nursery ready and stocking up on diapers.
But Giuliana and Bill Rancic had another not-so-obvious consideration on their preparation checklist – cord blood banking.
After a long and emotional journey to start a family, the reality TV couple welcomed son Edward Duke via gestational surrogate back in August and saving their baby’s cord blood was a top priority.
Cord blood is the blood that remains in the placenta and umbilical cord after a baby is born. It is rich with stem cells, which can be used later in life to treat a wide array of health problems.
It’s something we were introduced to about 12 years ago when Giuliana’s first niece was born,” the 38-year-old Fashion Police co-host wrote in a blog for People. “Giuliana’s sister banked all four of her kids’ cord blood stem cells with Cord Blood Registry (CBR), the world’s largest and most experienced stem cell bank.”
She went on,
“Some parents might ask us why we banked. After our own health scares and all that we went through to finally get pregnant, it was a no-brainer for us. We’ve always taken charge of our own health and wanted to do the same for our son even before he was born.”
The Rancics struggled with infertility, miscarriage and a breast cancer battle for Giuliana who underwent a double mastectomy last fall.
And not only did the couple bank baby Edward’s cord blood, they’ve teamed up with CBR to launch the Healthy Future’s Campaign – an initiative that allows expecting parents to receive information on cord blood banking.
“We’ve always been very open about our lives,” Bill said in a statement. “Because many expecting parents are not adequately informed about the value of their newborn’s cord blood, they may not know saving it can provide a health resource for the future. We’re proud to partner with CBR on this campaign and share our decision to raise awareness about this important health decision.”
According to CBR, Cord blood has already been used in more than 25,000 transplants worldwide for diseases including leukemia and blood disorders.
Do you know anyone who saved their baby’s cord blood?