Once you have made the decision to store cord stem cells with Cryo-Save South Africa you can request an application kit by phone, email or fax, or request a personal consultation.
Once we’ve processed your application and received your payment in respect of the processing fee, your collection kit will be dispatched to within 24-48 hours.
RECEIVING YOUR ‘COLLECTION KIT’
Once you have received your kit, we recommend it remains in your possession until the birth.
We like to think of it as one of the items you’d pack in your hospital bag.
INFORMING YOUR MEDICAL PRACTITIONER
If you have not already discussed your decision to collect your baby’s umbilical cord stem cells with your obstetrician/midwife, now is the time to do so. As more and more patients choose to collect their baby’s cord blood, doctors are becoming increasingly familiar with the collection process.
However if your doctor has never done a cord blood collection before, Cryo-Save does provide simple step-by-step instructions in all the collection kits we supply and our doctor is on call 24/7 to provide any telephonic support required prior to the procedure.
Collection is a very simple, non-invasive and totally painless procedure for you and your baby. On the birth day, you will hand your doctor our ‘Collection Kit’. During your birth, once the baby is born the umbilical cord is clamped and cut as normal.
Your Paediatrician will ensure your baby is all well and your doctor will collect the blood that is left over from the umbilical cord and placenta. A needle is inserted into the vein of the umbilical cord and blood is then quickly drained using a bag.
If you are also collecting umbilical cord tissue your doctor will collect a piece of the umbilical cord and put into our specially designed kit.
After the birth, your doctor will hand the kit back to you and we will collect the kit from your bedside. Private couriers will forward the sample to the AABB-accredited laboratory in Pretoria to be processed immediately to maximize the cell viability. It is important that the specimen reaches us as soon as possible after collection. For samples being stored overseas, these will first be processed in our South African lab and then safely transported in a frozen state to Belgium.
PROCESSING YOUR STEM CELLS
On arrival at our laboratory, your sample will be checked and prepared for further storage.
During examination and preparation, the stem cells are preserved using state-of-the-art technology and their quantity and quality will be determined. Flow-Cytometry testing of the cells ensures that the stem cells extracted are viable prior to storage in bags within aluminum cassettes. Your cells are then conserved below -196°C in the gas phase of liquid nitrogen – this is known as cryopreservation.
Should the cord blood or tissue supplied not correspond to the minimum requirements, we will leave it up to the parents to decide not to freeze the sample to avoid any additional cost.
The number of stem cells that are frozen may relate to the therapeutic use of the product at a later time.
All samples are processed according to International Standards.
YOUR STORED SAMPLE
Once your sample has been safely stored, our laboratory technician will phone you personally and talk you through the details of your stored stem cells. You will also receive a certificate with your samples details.
Remember that your contract with Cryo-Save South Africa is open ended and we plan to store your baby’s stem cells for their entire life or until you advise otherwise. Cryo-Save South Africa will remain in constant contact with you and look forward to welcoming your baby to our family.