Many women ask us whether they should only sign up after they have had children so we thought it would be useful to share the facts.
The younger a donor is when they sign up to join a register, the better long term value they offer and so we actively encourage donor drives being held in colleges and universities. It may be many years before a donor is identified as a match and so the longer they are available on the register, the better the chance of being able to help a patient.
At any time during pregnancy and for 12 months afterwards (when breastfeeding has ceased), a female donor is temporarily suspended and would not be asked to donate bone marrow or blood stem cells. Definitely anyone may join the register at any point in time and if you are already pregnant, then share with us the details of your due date and we will add that as a note in the register.
For any new parents, we do recommend they consider donating their baby’s umbilical cord blood as another way that they can help in the fight to save lives through stem cell transplantation. Similar to bone marrow, cord blood is rich in blood-forming cells that can be used to treat patients suffering from the various blood diseases such as leukaemia. More details are available at the Singapore Cord Blood Bank website.
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