Placenta Donation

Science has come a long way from where it started out. Today, millions of people donate their organs to others who are on waiting lists for organs that can save their lives. Today, there is a need for placenta donation. Multiple cellular components have been found within the placental tissue that have the potential to save lives. Any expecting mother with a planned Caesarean section delivery can donate her placenta as long as there are no disqualifying medical conditions.

The amniotic membrane (which is the innermost layer of the placenta) has been used for decades to promote healing after surgery. The amniotic membrane is a thin, yet very strong, membrane that has the potential to protect exposed areas of the body as they heal. Recently, the amniotic membrane has been used in cataract surgeries, skin grafts, spine surgeries, and for the treatment of difficult to heal wounds such as diabetic foot ulcers, bed sores, and burns.

If donating your placenta after a planned C-section sounds like something that you are interested in, talk to your doctor. If your physician is not a member of a placenta donation program and you wish to donate, there are programs that you can contact that will help you through the process. Once you have made the decision to donate your placenta after the birth of your baby, you will sign a consent form giving permission for the donation. You will be asked a series of questions regarding your medical and social history; this information will only be used in regard to medical purposes for use of the placenta. At the time of child birth, a blood sample will be taken to ensure the absence of any infectious diseases. And after the C-section delivery, a recovery technician will work with the delivery team to recover the placenta and prepare it for donation.

Many women do not give a second’s thought to their placenta during or after child birth. However, knowing that the donation of your placenta can help save lives make make you more aware of your placenta. Talk to your doctor about a placenta donation program.

Posted on behalf of Carlos Alarcon, M.D., Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.

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