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Are you or a loved one interested in receiving stem cell treatment? For free information, please fill out our treatment form or email me don@repairstemcells.org and just put TREATMENT in the subject box and the MEDICAL CONDITION in the message.
(Extract from article by David Prentice)
Umbilical cord blood stem cells have become an extremely valuable alternative to bone marrow adult stem cell transplants, ever since cord blood stem cells were first used for patients over 25 years ago. The first umbilical cord blood stem cell transplant was performed in October 1988, for a 5-year-old child with Fanconi anemia, a serious condition where the bone marrow fails to make blood cells. That patient is currently alive and healthy, 25 years after the cord blood stem cell transplant.

Since that time, over 30,000 cord blood stem cell transplants have been done around the world, and transplants have increased for various blood and bone marrow diseases and leukemias, as well as for genetic enzymatic diseases in children. Cord blood stem cell transplants have also become more common for adults with leukemia. Cord blood transplants have been especially helpful for racial and ethnic minorities.
 
Bone marrow adult stem cell transplants require an exact match between donor and recipient, and it can sometimes be difficult to find a donor match for a patient, especially for minorities. But umbilical cord blood stem cells can be used with some mismatch and still provide successful treatments.**
 
The Wall Street Journal recently noted the increased interest in umbilical cord blood by scientists and doctors seeking stem cell cures. Besides current treatments, cord blood stem cells are now being studied for their potential to treat many more diseases, including Type 1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, as well as congenital heart disease and cerebral palsy. The story quotes Dr. William Shearer, professor of pediatrics and immunology at Baylor College of Medicine:
 
“It’s a disposable item that Mother Nature provides us with… It’s a renewable source. It’s free and why not use it?”
Since the first umbilical cord blood stem cell transplant over 25 years ago, over 600,000 cord blood units have been stored away around the globe for future lifesaving transplants. Just two examples of public programs to collect and store umbilical cord blood stem cells are the National Marrow Donor Program (motto: “You could cure someone’s blood cancer by giving birth”) and the National Cord Blood Program, and additionally there are commercial cord blood storage companies, involved in collection, storage, and research. The data so far show that cord blood stem cells can be stored frozen for over 20 years without loss of potency.
 
And it’s not controversial. As a recent news story in the Washington Times showed, many more states are turning to ethical, successful adult stem cells, providing real hope and real treatments for thousands of people. One such state, Kansas, last year initiated a unique Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center that will treat patients, do research on new therapies, educate the public and professionals on the advantages of adult stem cells such as those from cord blood and the solid umbilical cord, and train physicians to deliver those treatments. Paul Wagle was appointed by Governor Brownback to represent the patient community on the new Advisory Board for the Kansas Center. Paul received an umbilical cord blood stem cell transplant for his leukemia in 2005. Partly as a result of the successful treatment, Paul developed an interest in science and earned a triple major from Benedictine College in Kansas in 2013, and is now in seminary. The Kansas Center has already treated its first patient and held its inaugural scientific conference.

Here are just a few other examples of the double lifesaving from a born baby and the saved cord blood.

Mary Lou Rusco also received umbilical cord blood stem cells for her leukemia. She received the treatment from doctors at the Kansas University Medical Center, and is now free from leukemia.

Joe Davis, Jr. was diagnosed with sickle cell anemia, at only a few months old. His parents were told that he wouldn’t survive to be a teenager, and they couldn’t find a bone marrow match for him. But along came younger brother Isaac, whose umbilical cord blood stem cells saved Joe Junior’s life.

Chloe Levine received an innovative cord blood stem cell transplant at Duke University to treat her cerebral palsy. She’s now a happy healthy little girl.

**As accurate and meaningful as this excerpt is, it is too conservative in 2014.  Yes, in 2010 it may have been considered correct, but today, umbilical cord stem cells (UCSC) are rapidly becoming the adult stem cells of choice at our world- leading 14 clinics.  There are two reasons for this: (1) Matching UCSC, as they must for bone marrow transplants, is a waste of time. The ultra-modern, super-clean cutting-edge labs which produce them deliver a product without DNA markers.  This means that the receiving patient's immune system cannot reject them as "strange DNA."  (2) Even more exciting, is that the stem cell leaders are choosing the rare "mesenchymal" stem cells rather than the commonplace stem cells found in bone marrow, adipose, or umbilical cords because they can become virtually any kind of tissue cell the patient may need.  Since the mesenchymal numbers are something like 1/1000 of the common cells, they must be cultured and grown over time---normally 2-3 months with bone marrow and adipose, making the patient wait or make two trips to the clinic.  But the new M-UCSC are prepared and delivered to the treating doctors before the patient even arrives, meaning he now gets mesenchymals without any delay!---Repair Stem Cells Institute

Posted: 2/15/2014 5:51:44 PM by Lance Johnson | with 0 comments


Are you or a loved one interested in receiving stem cell treatment? For free information, please fill out our treatment form or email me don@repairstemcells.org and just put TREATMENT in the subject box and the MEDICAL CONDITION in the message.
Madeleine-Connor.jpg
Madeleine Connor, 2, underwent an experimental procedure using her own cord blood stem cells to repair damaged tissue in her ear and restore her hearing. (Courtesy Stephanie Connor)

A virus infection Stephanie Connor acquired during pregnancy put her unborn daughter at significant risk for brain damage and lifelong hearing loss.
 
"It was traumatic," said Connor, of LaBelle, Fl, after learning about her daughter's condition. "It was like mourning the loss of a child."
 
At age 1, baby Madeleine was completely deaf in her right ear and her hearing was severely lost in the left, said Connor. While a hearing aid helped to amplify some sounds for Madeleine, it would never fully repair the damage in her ear.
 
But a simple experimental procedure that Connor enrolled in for Madeleine may have restored her hearing and reversed her condition.
 
In January 2012, Madeleine, 2, became the first child to undergo an experimental hearing loss treatment through an FDA-approved trial at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center that infused stem cells from her own banked cord blood into her damaged inner ear.
 
Within the last six months, Connor says she's seen a dramatic improvement in Madeleine's ability to hear.
 
"Before, when she would hear something she would look all around," Connor said. "But now we notice that she turns in the right direction of the sound."
 
Madeleine was also able to speak for the first time, Connor said.
 
For more than two decades, umbilical cord blood transplantation -- either by a baby's own cord blood or another's, depending on the type of procedure -- has been used to treat otherwise fatal diseases including blood disorders, immune diseases, and some types of cancers.
 
Infusing cord blood stem cells into the body may also have the potential to heal and regenerate damaged cells and tissues.
 
Regenerative therapy using cord blood stem cells is currently being studied as therapies to treat conditions including cerebral palsy and brain injury.
 
For the first time, doctors are experimenting with cord blood stem cells to regenerate hearing in children who have suffered hearing loss.
 
This yearlong study will follow 10 children, including Madeleine, ages 6 weeks to 18 months, who have acquired hearing loss and who have banked their cord blood with the Cord Blood Registry.
 
"There are a number of treatments for hearing loss, but most of them rely on amplification of noises, not reversal of the hearing loss," said Dr. Samer Fakhri, associate professor and program director in the Department of Otorhinolaryngology at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center, and principal investigator of the study.
 
Since Madeleine is part of a study that is currently under way, it's unclear whether Connor's perceived improvement of Madeleine is really due to the stem cell procedure.
 
Madeleine has already had one follow-up appointment to test her speech and language development, which are indicators that her hearing has improved. She will have another one mid-July.
 
Fakhri said it's still too early to determine whether the procedure benefitted Madeleine, or may be beneficial for other children.
 
"If there's any improvement, it should be detected within six months to a year," Fakhri said. "We can't determine from just one child if there's an overall benefit."
 
If the study results show significant improvement overall among the collective children studied, children with acquired -- not genetic -- hearing loss, may be able to benefit from the procedure.
 
"We do not recommend that stem cells at this point now should be a treatment modality for hearing loss," Fakhri said.
 
Previous studies in mice suggest long-term hearing repair after stem cell infusion. Fakhri says it's likely that if the procedure works, children like Madeleine will have long-term restored hearing.
 
"The way the stem cells work is they support repair," said Fakhri. "Once you repair the damage, there's no suggestion that it will dwindle over time."
 
Connor said the improvement she has seen so far is enough that she is grateful that she enrolled in the trial, and she hopes the study will prove to be beneficial in repairing hearing loss so other children can be treated successfully.
 
"As a mom of special needs, if you're able to help a child it's huge," she said. "There's nothing that can compare to giving a child back something that's been taken away."
Posted: 7/12/2012 4:16:20 PM by Lance Johnson | with 0 comments


Are you or a loved one interested in receiving stem cell treatment? For free information, please fill out our treatment form or email me don@repairstemcells.org and just put TREATMENT in the subject box and the MEDICAL CONDITION in the message.
Sitting in front of his occupational therapist last week at a Novi rehab facility, 9-year-old Kaden Strek had a choice to make: the green plastic turtle or the blue one.

Kaden-Strek.jpg
 
"Where's the green?" asked his therapist, Sara Wasser.
 
After a slight pause, Kaden reached out and plucked the green turtle out of Wasser's hand. A big smile spread across his face.
 
"Good job!" cheered Wasser.
 
A year ago, Kaden, of St. Clair Shores, couldn't see most colors. Born several months premature, he suffered a severe brain bleed as an infant and was later diagnosed with spastic diplegic cerebral palsy and blindness. As a result, he could only see some shapes, colors and patterns.
 
Now, a year after receiving eight cord blood stem cell infusions in China, Kaden can see not only primary colors but pastels. His language has improved dramatically, and he's saying new words every day and speaking in some sentences, said his mother, Eddie (short for Elizabeth) Strek. Even his walking and balance have improved.

And his family believes stem cells have made all the difference.
 
"This has given him a whole new kind of independence and control over himself that he's never had," Eddie Strek said. "It's so exciting to see."
 
So happy with his improvement over the last year, the Streks are raising money for Kaden to go back to China for another round of stem cell therapy, hopefully next summer. They'll need about $38,000 for treatment and travel costs.

Stem cell therapy is available only for certain conditions in the United States, and cerebral palsy is not among them. The therapy has become a big business overseas, available everywhere from Mexico to Thailand.
 
Treatment programs are offered for a host of conditions, but they're often very expensive, and critics question their efficacy.
 
Beike Biotechnology, the firm that conducted Kaden's stem cell therapy, treats more than 200 international patients a month with stem cell therapy.
 
Researchers such as Larry Goldstein, director of the University of California San Diego's stem cell program, are very wary of overseas programs. They question where the stem cells come from and wonder about possible risks.
 
In a case such as Kaden's, Goldstein said it's hard to tell whether stem cells made a difference or if he improved on his own.
 
"That is what clinical trials are for," he said in an email last week. "Every disease fluctuates in symptoms, and kids with developmental diseases tend to continue developing albeit at different rates. How does one know whether the transplant caused improvement versus intensive physical therapy versus fluctuation versus normal developmental improvements that would have happened anyway?"
 
Eddie Strek disagrees. She said Kaden has received fairly extensive therapy his entire life. He now receives occupational therapy and speech therapy four days a week.
 
"There's just no other explanation" for his progress since the cord blood stem cell infusions, she said.
Eddie said she noticed a change in Kaden's vision within 48 hours after his first infusion in China last summer. She was talking with her husband, Tom, on Skype with Kaden next to her when Kaden wanted to get closer to the screen and was looking intently at his dad.
 
"He can see me!" said Tom.
 
Wasser, an occupational therapist with Children's Hospital of Michigan's Novi rehabilitation facility, said Kaden also is using the left side of his body now, something he didn't really do before stem cells. Kaden is the first patient Wasser has ever worked with who's had a stem cell transplant.
 
"I've been an OT for over 10 years, and this is the first patient I've ever had who has regained vision," Wasser said. "… For him, it's really teaching him to use something that he never had before."
 
That means teaching Kaden basic items such as cat, ball and bike. His mom said he knew what a cat said before, but didn't know what one looked like.
 
Working with Wasser during a recent therapy session, Kaden stared at an augmentative communication device the size of a laptop computer. The screen showed a grid with 15 squares. A bell popped up in one square. Kaden had to track it across the screen and tap it with a small pointer. Eventually, the grid got bigger and the bell got smaller, but he still found the bell.
 
Eddie Strek said it's frustrating that stem cell treatment largely isn't available in the United States, because "so many people could be helped."
 
"These are tangible results," Eddie Strek said. "Anyone that knew him before and sees him now, you can see the results. He's a different kid."


PS from Don Margolis: We featured Kaden last year as the family was preparing to go to China.  You can find that article by putting STREK in the search box above.
Posted: 7/1/2012 2:53:58 PM by Lance Johnson | with 0 comments


Are you or a loved one interested in receiving stem cell treatment? For free information, please fill out our treatment form or email me don@repairstemcells.org and just put TREATMENT in the subject box and the MEDICAL CONDITION in the message.
CHENNAI: For nearly three years, Sundar (26) was waiting to be told that he could to regain control of his bladder and move around. Sundar, who fell off a tree, injured his spine and was paralyzed below the navel. In 2011, when doctors at Laksha Hospital in Chennai told him there was hope in the stem cell therapy trials, he signed the consent form. 
 
Mumbai-based Dr B S Rajput, consultant orthopaedic and stem cell transplant surgeon at Breach Candy Hospital, told him he would inject stem cells drawn from his own body into him to repair the shredded network of nerves crisscrossing the spinal cord. At a press conference on Monday, Sundar, a farmer, walked with support, and smiled at flashing media cameras. "I tried everything before agreeing for stem cell therapy. I was told there is no hope of walking again and I was bed ridden. I chose stem cell therapy as I had no other option. Now, I have complete bladder and bowel control," he said, shaking hands with Dr Rajput. 
 
In 2008, Sundar suffered a serious spine injury after a fall from a tree. After initial treatment, doctors told him he had suffered post-traumatic paraplegia and that he would have to remain on bed. Sundar then met Laksha Hospital managing director Dr Senthil Kumar who told him about Dr Rajput and his experience in stem cell therapy. After the informed consent form was signed, Sundar was brought for trial on April 26, 2011. 
 
Dr Senthil Kumar and Dr Rajput hope Sundar's condition would further improve over time. They did a similar transplant on a 4-year-old boy with cerebral palsy. "It's a trial, but these tiny cells are helping us build big hopes," said Dr Senthil Kumar.
Posted: 5/29/2012 3:25:43 PM by Lance Johnson | with 0 comments


Are you or a loved one interested in receiving stem cell treatment? For free information, please fill out our treatment form or email me don@repairstemcells.org and just put TREATMENT in the subject box and the MEDICAL CONDITION in the message.
Now 13, he is still getting better and better.

Lisa-Biermann.jpg

Lisa Biermann has been dedicated to the improvement of her son’s quality of life. Thus far, she has experienced the miracle of hearing her son speak, as well as many other accomplishments, after she was told he would never be able to perform everyday tasks.


THANX TO PAMELA COTE  
 
Tyler Biermann is a lot like other sixth grade boys. He loves working on his computer, playing video games, riding a bike and watching television. He has a silly sense of humor and is very curious about the world around him.
 
What makes Tyler so very special is the great physical hurdles he has overcome in the past 12 years of his life to be able to do the things that most boys his age seem to do so effortlessly.
When Tyler was born, the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck, causing a lack of oxygen to his brain that led to Tyler suffering a stroke during delivery. The stroke caused damage to the back of Tyler’s brain. Tyler was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and his mother, Lisa Biermann, was told to expect the worst: a child who would never walk, talk, or have any chance at a normal life.
 
Lisa refused to give up hope. She tried everything she could to help Tyler. Tyler could not walk because his feet would not sit flat on the floor. She tried botox injections every three months, braces, casts and even ankle cord surgery. Nothing worked.
 
Lisa said Tyler could not communicate with her at all. She never knew when he was in pain because he was unable to tell her.
 
Tyler was considered to be blind, with a prescription that was over nine units nearsighted, and his eyes jumped around. Even with glasses, he could not focus his vision, and doctors did not believe he could see, or ever would see.
 
Until he was 8 years old, Lisa would carry Tyler from his classes at Woodland Park Elementary.
 
When Tyler was 8, he had a seizure.  A USA stem cell doctor heard about Tyler and offered to help him with umbilical cord stem cell therapy. Lisa said she thought hard about it, and because she had tried everything else and nothing had worked, she decided to try the stem cell therapy, which she was assured (correctly) that it had no serious side effects.
 
In December 2007, Lisa took Tyler to Mexico for the treatment, which had to be done in Tijuana because stem cells injection was not legal in the United States. 
Nor is it today, five years later.   Nor will it be anytime this decade, according to Don Margolis .  Three months later, they went for a second injection.
 
The stem cells were given to Tyler intravenously for a period of approximately 45 minutes.
 
Lisa said within weeks, she saw monumental changes in Tyler. All the milestones he never reached as a baby, he began reaching.
 
Within three months Tyler could put his feet flat on the floor and could walk independently. At six months post-treatment, he no longer needed the painful braces that gave him bunions.
 
Also within the first three months, Tyler took off his glasses and told Lisa, “no see, Mom.” When Lisa took Tyler to the eye doctor, his vision had improved from nine units nearsighted to 5.5. At six months post-treatment he had improved to four units. He is now at about 1 unit nearsighted and his doctor does not believe that he needs to wear his glasses. Even more impressive is that he can communicate and answer questions posed by the eye doctor.
 
In fact, Tyler, who could not communicate at all before his stem cell treatment, can now say hundreds of words. He can recite the alphabet. Tyler can spell and is even starting to read. He makes the honor roll and has received two spotlight awards from school for his progress.
 
Tyler helps with household chores, can walk up and down the stairs and pour himself something to drink. In December, he decided that he wanted to ride a bike and could not be discouraged from trying. To her great surprise, Lisa said Tyler not only climbed onto his friend’s bike, but he started peddling as well.
 
There have been setbacks along the way. Last April, Lisa took Tyler to the doctor because his blood pressure was very high. The doctor noticed that Tyler had no pulse in his legs and had an MRI performed.
 
The MRI showed that Tyler had a rare birth defect. He only had two heart valves and his aorta was pinched. The MRI also showed that Tyler’s veins and arteries had formed a web around his heart and major organs to supply them with blood. Lisa credits the stem cells for protecting Tyler’s organs.
 
Tyler had surgery to repair his aorta and has recovered well.
 
“He improves every single day,” Lisa said.
 
Lisa hopes to take Tyler for another stem cell treatment this summer. She wants everyone to know that there is hope and shares her experiences and links to others’ stories on her website, www.stemcellhelps.com.
Posted: 5/1/2012 12:11:06 PM by Lance Johnson | with 0 comments


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