My Child has Leukemia–What Can I Do?

No one who hasn’t had a seriously ill child can possibly imagine what it’s like to hear that your child’s life is in danger (and I say that as one who has been blessed with three remarkably healthy children). But in this guest post, Erin Miller gives all of us some valuable information that, hopefully, we’ll never need. But just in case….

The Leukemia Research Foundation has found that leukemia accounts for 33% of all cases of cancer in children 0 to 14 years of age. At the present time researchers do not know the direct causes, but only the circumstances that increase the possibilities of a community’s children getting this type of cancer. The most common type of leukemia in childhood is acute lymphoblastic. Acute means the cancer has a rapid onset. Lymphoblastic is a type of white blood cell that is not mature yet. White blood cells are the entities that fight germs and keep your body healthy. Immature white blood cells do not have the mechanisms yet to fight the germs. So often in leukemia a child dies from some other infection that their body was unable fight off due to the cancer weakening their health.
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Cord Blood Banking

Dear Mr. Dad: My wife is due in three months and we’ve seen ads and flyers for cord blood banking. Several of our friends have signed up for it. Is it really worthwhile?

A: Not all that long ago, placentas and umbilical cords were considered medical waste. But today, the stem cells found in umbilical cords can be used to treat dozens of conditions, including leukemia and some cancers. And as technology advances, researchers are looking at cord blood stem cells as a possible cure for everything from torn ligaments and diabetes, to heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and spinal cord injury.

So when it comes to your baby’s umbilical cord, you have three basic options: throw it away, donate it to a public cord blood bank, or bank it privately. Because of the tremendous potential benefits, I strongly recommend that you NOT toss it out. Let me give you some of the pros and cons of the other two options:
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