Are you nearing your due date? At this point, there must be an infinite list of things to take care of for most parents to be. While ticking off your “due day” checklist, here’s a little something you ought to consider while preparing for your BIG day - Placenta Donation.
Before diving into the process of placenta donation, let us first have a quick look at what placenta is, its role in pregnancy, and its potential healing properties.
Placenta And Its Role In Pregnancy
Placenta is a kind of organ that forms a significant part of your pregnancy. Its remarkable nature allows this organ to survive only over the course of a pregnancy, while it is designed in a way to provide support and protection to the baby inside the womb.1 The mother and baby have separate blood supplies while the latter is still inside the womb. The role of placenta here is that of assisting in the transmission of important nutrients and oxygen via maternal blood to the growing baby’s blood.1
Another significant function of the placental organ is to act as a mediator between their immune systems so that the mother’s immune system does not mistake the baby’s immune system as foreign and attack it with antibodies.2
Now that you have a fair idea on the importance of placenta in pregnancy, let us find out how this vital organ has a significant role to play outside the body in various medical applications when donated.
By opting for placenta donation, you will be a part of a remarkable cause that uses the donated placenta in various medical applications and studies. There are many healthcare facilities that will assist you in donating your placenta at the time of birth of your baby, one such being LifeCell’s Placenta Donation Program!
How Does Placenta Donation Help?
The placental tissue comprises the amnion and chorion membranes, which are further made up of special cells, growth factors, and bioactive molecules that promote our body’s healing mechanism.3 Grafts made from these membranes have, therefore, been utilized in wound healing and ophthalmic treatments for several decades now.4
Presently, multiple studies are being carried out worldwide to test the potential of placental membranes in treating several medical conditions related to urology, dentistry, cartilage repair, and spinal problems.5
Each donated placenta can be used to prepare about 8-10 transplantable amniotic membrane grafts for the healing of chronic or non-healing wounds (wounds that fail to heal normally within a given time frame)6. In other words, your single donation can be used to improve the lives of as many as 10 patients!
Who Can Donate Their Placenta?
All healthy, expecting mothers can donate their placenta, unless diagnosed with an underlying medical condition like cancer or any infectious disease. Age is no bar for this program and any willing donor who is planning on having a cesarean section/normal delivery can enrol for placenta donation.
After getting consent from the concerned individual, the umbilical cord along with the placenta will be collected after delivery in a completely painless procedure. It is important to note that this step is absolutely safe, painless and doesn’t pose any danger to the mother or the baby in any way as no surgical intervention is required.
How To Donate Your Placenta?
The placenta can be donated in 4 easy and seamless steps:
- If you are expecting and planning on undergoing a cesarean-section, please discuss the option of placenta donation with your consulting gynecologist.
- Once you are sure about your decision, contact LifeCell on 1800 266 5533
- Following this, you will be asked to fill a consent form along with an easy questionnaire. Kindly note that all the provided information here will be kept highly confidential.
- At the time of your c-section/normal delivery, a LifeCell paramedic will be present to collect the placenta along with a blood sample of the mother to rule out the presence of any disqualifying conditions.
That’s it! Your little one’s placenta will then be on its way to heal the world and save the day.
A Closing Note!
We hope we were able to address all your doubts related to placenta donation in this blog.
The placenta is usually discarded as medical waste in hospitals after the baby’s birth. However, given its exceptional healing potential, discarding placenta is a huge loss to the field of wound care! By deciding to donate the placenta, you will be helping your baby kick start its journey in this world as a donor - helping others heal and lead healthier lives!