Video: Stem Cell Therapy in Panama with Dr. Riordan and Mel Gibson

Host Michael Beattie discusses stem cell therapy using *human umbilical cord tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hUCT-MSCs)  at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama with renowned applied stem cell scientist and founder, Neil Riordan, Pa, PhD and acclaimed actor, director and producer Mel Gibson.

Dr. Riordan discusses the miraculous progress of a spinal cord injury patient and pilot whose doctors said that he would never walk again.  He talks about where the stem cells come from, how they work and why they can treat so many seemingly different conditions.  Dr. Riordan explains how umbilical cords, and subsequently, hUCT-MSCs used at the Stem Cell Institute are carefully selected using molecular screening.  He also discusses why mesenchymal stem cells from umbilical cords function better than MSCs from adults, especially as they age or if they are suffering from a disease like multiple sclerosis.  For example. MSCs from a newborn multiply exponentially compared to MSCs from an older adult.

Mel Gibson discusses his father’s miraculous recovery, literally from his deathbed after receiving hUCT-MSCs at the age of 92.  He’s currently 99 and still going strong having been treated in Panama several times since then.  Mel also discusses his personal experiences in Panama.

Watch all this and more.

*umbilical cord tissue harvested after normal, healthy births

Stem Cell Therapy for Cerebral Palsy – Sofia O.

My name is Maria, I’m Sofia’s mom, and this is my husband Sean, and that’s Sofia!

Sofia suffered a lack of oxygen at birth and has cerebral palsy because of it, so it’s a middle-grade injury.

We’ve been here last year for the stem cell treatment and she showed immediate improvement. Her circulation improved. She used to have purple toes and that stopped since the last treatment. Her vision improved. Her far-away vision last year, and this year she has reported to us that she has more sensation in the body, her hearing… like, last night we went out and she didn’t need the headphones. She was okay.

She wasn’t bothered by the noise from the traffic. She was much better, looser, and happier.

And definitely, she also reported that her vision improved even further. She was able to describe the colors of the cars, birds that she saw from the 24th floor.

And today, she says she doesn’t have pain in her arms and stomach anymore, so she feels looser and more comfortable.

Colton’s walking after stem cell therapy for cerebral palsy in Panama

Colton is planning on coming to Panama for follow-up treatment later this year. Here is a video of him walking from June 2015.

And here was Colton in 2014 about one year prior to the video above. This video was taken a year after his first treatments in 2013.

To keep up with Colton’s progress on Facebook, please visit:

Stem Cell Treatments for Cerebral Palsy – Mary Washington’s Story

Sarah Washington and her daughter Mary. Mary is 2 years old and was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when she was 4 months old. She was first treated at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama using human umbilical cord-derived stem cells. Mary received these stem cells intravenously over the course of 4 days. Her first treatment was in September of 2012. This interview was recorded in March 2013 at the clinic while she was there for a second round of treatments.

What kind of improvements have you noticed?

Overall, in general, what we noticed was, her upper body, she’s very stiff. She’s spastic in her legs and her arms and she has low tone in her trunk. In her upper body, we noticed a pretty significant improvement. Her range of motion, she couldn’t lift her arms over her before and now she can do that on both sides easily. And her hands, she was in tight little fists most of the time, whereas now if she is in a fist it’s very loose. But most of the time she kind of has her hands relaxed. That was a big improvement for us; small but significant for our family.

Her vision has improved, not necessarily distance but as far as like what I think as seeing details. So she would be able to tell the difference between you and me if we didn’t say anything. Whereas before, I don’t think she could do that. She would rely on smell and hearing more than her vision. Now she uses her vision a lot more. So that’s been an improvement that we’ve seen.
She is more involved in the world around her. [She] wants to be more involved in the world around her so that’s good. She has definitely, she doesn’t say, “mama, dada, ba, ba” yet but she definitely is making more vocalizations, making more sounds and trying to experiment with her voice, which is a positive thing.

She is trying different ways of communicating versus just screaming which is what she did before because that is all she knew how to do. And now, she is kind of fussing or sometimes she’ll just kind of like, yell and stop and wait for me to answer her instead of just going from “zero” to “scream”. So her communication has improved as well.

One thing that we were not expecting that we were pleased about is an improvement in her seizures. That wasn’t even something that we had even, I don’t know. I guess it just didn’t occur to us that maybe this would be helpful with that but before we came the first time in September she had been sick and we actually had to delay our trip twice because she had bronchialitis. She was just having a really hard time. And she was having a lot of seizures. We had to add a new seizure medicine to try to get them under control and she was having 6 or 7 short myotonic jerks every day. The first time we were here, by about Thursday, which was like day three of treatment, of stem cells we noticed that she hadn’t had a seizure that day. Whereas before, she was having 6 or 7 a day. And so, that was one thing. It was surprising but it was a nice surprise that those have improved since we’ve been here. She will still have breakthrough seizures every now and then when she’s sick, teething but she, we haven’t gone back to that, where she was having them on a regular basis. So that’s good. That’s been a good improvement.

Since we’ve been here this time, I haven’t really seen anything where I could say, “Oh, I think that’s the stem cells.” yet but I do know that last time it did take a couple of weeks for us to notice, you know, or to really pinpoint and say, “Yes, we think that is the stem cells. There’s no way she could have done that before.” So, and all of our therapists agree that her range of motion and her upper body for sure, and her vision would not have been the way they were without coming here.

Stem cell therapy for cerebral palsy: Sarai Nathan

“Sarai walking with assistance after stem cell therapy in panama. She could not even stand before.” – Elizabeth, Sarai’s mother

Sarai Nathan suffers from mild spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy. She came to the Stem Cell Institute at the beginning of August 2011 when she was about 16 months old. The following is a transcription of a phone call interview with Sarai’s mother, Elisabeth. It took place on January 18, 2012 about 5 1/2 months after her stem cell procedures.

How is Sarai doing since receiving stem cell therapy five months ago?

She’s walking with very, very little support. Ever since we got the stem cell transplant, there’s been tons of progress. The major thing that I relay to people is that the stem cell treatment kind of put the cells in place to rebuild everything.

We flew right from the stem cell treatment to a place called the Napa Center and did a three-week intensive [physical therapy] program four hours per day and she was a completely different person four weeks later.

This is the most amazing, miraculous thing I have ever seen. She’s a completely different kid. Where did you go? – pediatrician

Once the stem cells migrated and rebuilt, all-of-the-sudden she was able to able to do all these things crazy quickly. It was unbelievable. She went from not being able to sit to sitting, standing cruising furniture by herself; without any assistance at all and she couldn’t even lift up her trunk prior to coming to Panama. Out of 100% being fully recovered, I would say she has had an 85% recovery since before the stem cells.

I know that the stem cells kind of laid the groundwork for that progress to be made but I definitely believe that doing the intensive right after the stem cells sealed the deal. I don’t think it was just the stem cells. I think that doing one right after the other made the progress amazing.

Did you try any other kinds of treatments before stem cells?

We tried hyperbaric [oxygen treatments] which worked but I noticed that the results regressed a little bit after a few months. It would make her spasticity better and then little by little I’d notice it start to come back 3 -5 months later. The whole thing was very expensive and time consuming though.

How did you find out about the Stem Cell Institute?

I am really active on a lot of Yahoo groups and I read about the parents who had positive results with stem cells and many had good experiences with the Stem Cell Institute. So I called them and they were really on top of getting back to me and answering all of my questions.

And my dad, who has a background in law enforcement, had it checked out as well because he said that he wouldn’t pay some crooks to inject my kid at some random place in Panama. After everything checked out, he helped me pay for it. And I am so glad that we got to do it.

What is your opinion of the doctors and medical staff at the clinic?

We tell people all the time that it was the best medical care we’ve ever received since our daughter was born. The hospitals, doctors, they were all far superior in patient care. They were prompt, professional, loving and they still check in with us all the time.

And the IV, I’ve never seen someone nail an IV that quickly. Randy Bowen [MD], who did all of her IV injections was just so good. My daughter had a huge crush on him and on the second day, actually started handing him her arm. Instead of crying when she was about to get an injection, she would look a little scared and just hand him her arm like, “Alright, just get it over with.” She was only 16 months old so it wasn’t like she could talk or anything.

What do her doctors and therapists at home think?

Well, I didn’t tell her pediatrician that we were going because I knew that he would try to talk me out of it. So I made an appointment right when we got back from the stem cells and the intensive. [at the appointment] I had her sitting on the table by herself and he walked in and said, “Oh, my God! What did you do?” I told him that we actually took her to get a stem cell transplant and he said, “This is the most amazing, miraculous thing I have ever seen. She’s a completely different kid. Where did you go?”

He was asking me about all the information for the clinic; everyone’s name and number. He also said, “I would have tried to talk you out of it so I am so glad you didn’t tell me. What happened to your child is unbelievable and it makes me want to fight and advocate for stem cells.” He’s been specializing in neuro-developmental delays for a long time and said that he would everything he could for the rest of his life to advocate for this therapy.

Now the center that did her intensive [physical therapy]…the things they said were, “I’ve never seen a child progress so quickly.” They watched her spasticity go away and they also watched her strength increase and all her therapists just kept saying, “It’s not usual for a kid to progress this quickly. She is doing exceptionally well.” All of our therapists – when we got home to Hawaii – they said the same things, “This is like a completely different child. This is unbelievable.”

And they asked me, of course, where we went.

Stem cell therapy for cerebral palsy: Tessa Hancock

The biggest thing we’ve noticed is her ability to track people and her vision. Her cognitive skills have improved. Before her stem cell treatment 7 months ago, she was like a 50 watt light bulb and she is like a 200 watts in comparison. She reacts more, holds her head up more and her hands are nice and open now, not fisted like before. Hand to mouth motion is much easier for her to do. Her range of motion, in general, is much better. She can now raise her hands over her head and she was never able to do that before.

Her therapists have seen dramatic changes. Our family has noticed changes. The neurologist has noticed changes. We are very thankful that we were able to get this treatment for her in Panama. We couldn’t imagine her not being who she is now. She is 200 times better than what she was.