Baby Ilya was not yet born when he was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect: ventricular septal defect and transposition of large blood vessels. His parents immediately turned to the Center of Children’s Cardiology and Cardiosurgery in Kiev, Ukraine, to try anything to save their child.
The team of doctors at the Center presented them with the possibility of performing open-heart surgery on the newborn and using the blood from his umbilical cord as support during the operation. The couple immediately decided to collect and store their baby’s umbilical cord.
During the operation, a few days after the birth of baby Ilya, cord blood was used to provide circulation through the heart-lung machine. The operation was successful and Ilya recovered very quickly and without complications.
The Center of Children’s Cardiology and Cardiosurgery in Kiev is among the first in the world to have used cord blood during heart surgery on newborns. Compared to the blood of an adult donor, the umbilical cord blood of a newborn is enriched with additional chemicals and stem cells, is saturated with oxygen and does not create an additional load on the patient’s immune system.
In addition, thanks to its unique regenerative and repairing properties, the cord blood has allowed baby Ilya to recover quickly and completely from the surgery he underwent just a few days after his birth. Now, his family advises everyone they know to «preserve the umbilical cord for the protection of children».