Lillian Rowland is a 79 year-old [former] heart failure patient from Ohio. She was diagnosed with heart failure in March 2012. Her left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) at that time was measured at 25%. Normal LVEF range is 55% – 70%.
Lillian’s cardiologist recommended an implantable defibrillator. At the time, she did not want to go through the implantation procedure so she declined. Lillian decided to go to the Stem Cell Institute (SCI) in Panama for human umbilical cord-derived stem cell treatments after hearing about it from her son Jay Lenner who works for SCI as its Public Relations Manager.
Below is a brief interview with Lillian in March 2013. Today, her heart is back into normal range (LVEF = 55%) and her cardiologist told her that she no longer needs an implantable defibrillator.
What was your diagnosis?
I was diagnosed with heart failure.
When were you diagnosed?
I was diagnosed in March 2012.
What symptoms did you have?
I couldn’t breathe at night. I was sleeping and I had to get up. I was gasping for breath.
Why did you choose the Stem Cell Institute?
Because my son works in stem cells and after I got out of the hospital in Arizona he wanted to take me down to have stem cells to see if it could help repair the damage to my heart.
How where the doctors at the clinic?
The doctors were very nice and there’s really nothing to it. It’s just an injection that goes into [a catheter placed into a vein inside] your hand. It’s not like they are operating on you or anything.
How was the clinic?
The clinic is very clean and sterile and the people are very nice.
Do you have any symptoms now?
It’s been a year since I had the stem cells and I am symptom free.
I had an echocardiogram a year after the stem cells and when they read it my ejection fraction was 55%. They wanted to put a defibrillator in me and the heart doctor came up and said, there’s no reason to put one in now because my heart was OK.
Would you recommend that other heart failure patients go to Panama for treatment?
Yes I would.
Do you think this changed your life?
Yes. I don’t have to worry about having a heart problem!
The umbilical cord stem cells we use are recovered from donated umbilical cords following normal, healthy births. Before they are approved for use in treatments, all umbilical cord-derived stem cell samples are screened for viruses and bacteria to International Blood Bank standards.