Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is more debilitating than most people think. It affects everything in your daily life and holds you back from getting to have normal experiences like everyone else, while physically it can look as if there is nothing wrong with you at all. RA is an ‘invisible’ autoimmune disease that primarily affects the joints. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), patients with rheumatoid arthritis can experience the following symptoms:
- Debilitating aches and pains, stiffness, tenderness, and weakness in joints
- Equal symptoms on both sides of the body (such as in both hands or both knees)
- Weight loss
Rheumatoid Arthritis affects all aspects of life—from trying to clean your house to playing outside with your kids. It steals your ability to be able to enjoy everyday experiences because of the chronic joint pain you live with. It is a complex autoimmune disease that not many people fully understand unless they have experienced it for themselves.
Typically, rheumatoid arthritis is treated with immune-suppressive agents such as steroids, methotrexate, cyclosporine, gold, and more recently, infliximab (Remicade). While these types of anti-rheumatic drugs are known for reducing inflammation, they can also cause painful side effects such as:
- Even more fatigue
Regenerative medicine through stem cell therapy is a newer treatment option for rheumatoid arthritis that many patients have found has the potential to exhibit promising improvements in their condition.
Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Based Therapy for Rheumatoid Arthritis
At Stem Cell Institute, we are at the forefront of stem cell research, and we provide stem cell treatment for patients with rheumatoid arthritis. The types of stem cells we use are called Golden Cells™ [also referred to as Human Umbilical Cord Tissue Mesenchymal Stem Cells (HUCT MSCs)]. These are derived from human umbilical cords that are donated by mothers after normal, healthy births.
Mesenchymal stem cells produce anti-inflammatory agents that can act on inflamed tissue, but do not suppress the immune response of the patient’s whole body. Additionally, these stem cells induce the production of T regulatory cells, a type of immune cell that protects the body against immunological self-attack.
After the stem cells are isolated, harvested, and screened to maximize safety and efficacy, they can be introduced into the patient’s body. By increasing the amount of healthy stem cells in the human body, stem cell therapy can help reduce inflammation caused by autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, so they are a viable long term treatment option.
Is Stem Cell Therapy Effective for People with Rheumatoid Arthritis?
By using specially selected human umbilical cord tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (Golden Cells™), we have observed improvements in patients with rheumatoid arthritis treated at Stem Cell Institute, including individuals like Stephanie Mortellaro.
Stephanie is a 50-year-old New Yorker who loves to hike, meditate, and do yoga. 30 years ago, Stephanie was living her dream working as a professional dancer when she received a devastating rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis that changed her life forever. Her symptoms included a significant amount of fatigue, intense pain, and loss of mobility in her shoulders, hips, knees, hands, and feet.
She was initially treated with the usual immune-supressive agents like methotrexate and biologics like etanercept (Enbrel), but they made her feel terrible. For 15 years, Stephanie felt sick from the intense side effects of her rheumatoid arthritis medications, so she decided to step away from mainstream medicine and research alternative treatment.
Luckily, she didn’t have to look far. Stephanie’s father introduced her to stem cells after his own experience receiving treatment! He received stem cell treatment for a knee injury, and it was so successful that he was able to go out golfing two weeks later. Stephanie was convinced to try stem cell therapy for herself.
Stem Cell Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis in Panama City, Panama
Prior to her stem cell treatment infusions at Stem Cell Institute, Stephanie had a cut on her face that refused to heal. That wound healing was the first sign for her that stem cell therapy was working.
By day three, Stephanie felt very energized and she wasn’t experiencing any of the pain she dealt with on a regular basis. As time went on, her health kept getting better and better.
When she visited her doctor for blood work a few months later, the results came back with zero inflammation. Her results made it look as if she had no illness. These results were so startling that her doctor thought there was an error and re-ran the blood work, but the results were still just as amazing the second time. Stephanie’s autoimmune disease—her 30-year struggle with rheumatoid arthritis—was now practically invisible.
Stephanie came to Stem Cell Institute with low expectations. She was hoping it would work as well as the previous medications she used to treat her rheumatoid arthritis, but without all of the frustrating side effects.
“It far exceeded those expectations for me. I went periods of time with no pain. I hiked a high peak. And I’m thinking way back to 27 years ago when the doctor said, you know, you wouldn’t be able to do anything remotely close to that. It was a big deal.”
Stephanie Mortellaro, Rheumatoid Arthritis
From the moment she stepped off the plane in Panama City, Panama, Stephanie’s experience with Stem Cell Institute was “so easy it was fabulous.” Hilton Panama was beautiful and full of convenient amenities to entertain her for the entire week’s stay.
Watch her full story:
If you’re feeling like Stephanie was—sick of experiencing debilitating joint pain and painful side effects from RA medications, we’re here to help. Stem cell treatment could be your first step toward improvements with rheumatoid arthritis.
Whether you’re wanting to hike a mountain or simply enjoy some pain-free time with your family, stem cell treatment may provide you with the opportunity for a healthier life.
Apply for stem cell treatment at Stem Cell Institute today!