Levi's Story: Cord Blood Research for Autism
Levi: “Hello, my name is Levi. This is my mom Lovie, and this is my dad Serge.”
Lovie: “Our experience with CBR definitely gave him the opportunities that all other kids will have.”
Serge: “We became concerned when, after one, when he wouldn’t speak yet.”
Lovie: “He wasn’t even saying ‘Mom’ or ‘Dad’, so we started to become a little bit concerned… Finding out that our son was autistic, we were like fearful of what was going to happen to him in the future, and what his life might be. He didn’t really interact with other kids. They could play all around him, and it was like they didn’t exist. He was just in his own little world.”
Serge: “It was sad, really really sad, and feeling hopeless, not knowing how to help. I started reading what autism is. Is there any kind of help?”
Lovie: “We saw the clinical trial where they were looking for kids to participate, and it said that they had to have their own newborn cells. We kind of started reading about it, and it was like a plan.”
CBR: Before Levi was born, Lovie and Serge decided to store his newborn stem cells with CBR.
Lovie: “I was at the doctor’s office when I first saw the CBR pamphlet on the table. We wanted to do a little bit of research, so we went to the CBR website, and it listed out all the treatments that stem cells were being used for at the time. It also listed out things that were being studied, and that helped us in making our decision.”
Serge: “We looked on the price, and - why not? Let’s just have it, put it in the bank, and hopefully forget about it and never use it, but at least we’ll have it.”
CBR: CBR connected the Motsnyy family to a clinical trial evaluating cord blood as a potential treatment for autism.
Lovie: “It was just that realization that, Holy Smoke we stored his newborn cells. So there’s an answer right there, and we felt like, that our son has a chance at life. We went into the research study not knowing. We didn’t know if it would make a difference or not. And that if it didn’t, it still wouldn’t change our opinion of storing the cells and doing research; because how will we ever find out if something does work, if we don’t do more research for it? And even now, there’s so much more to uncover.”
CBR: Between clinical trial visits, Levi participated in other therapies designed for children with autism.
Lovie: “The research study itself was a year-long process, and over that time period, what we saw was just amazing. We’re thankful that CBR offered that kind of service, and that something within us told us to participate. Maybe telling the story will make people research for themselves and find all of the many diseases that can be treated using stem cells.
CBR: What is their life like today?
Serge: “He comes up and called me, ‘Oh hey Dad, look!’ He started talking.”
Lovie: “The communication, the touching, the talking, so many things that he didn’t do and didn’t participate in, was actually no longer an issue.”
Serge: “You don’t expect that health issues can hit you later, but investing into newborn cells is definitely one of those that gives you peace of mind. And that investment that we’ve done is life-changing.”
Lovie: “It’s comforting, because that fear of ‘what’s going to happen when we’re gone?’ is no longer there. We don’t have to worry about who’s going to take care of him because he’s gonna be able to take care of himself. There is no greater feeling than knowing that he’s going to be okay.”