Stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury: The Spinal Cord Journey

A short film about three spinal cord injury patients who share their stories of tragedy, hope and recovery following stem cell treatments for spinal cord injury at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, Panama. See them demonstrate their improvements by lifting themselves up, standing and even walking after stem cell therapy.

Stem Cell Therapy for spinal cord injury: Theo Kostoulas

Theo Kostoulas is a T-6 complete spinal cord injury patient. He received a course of 16 stem cell therapy injections using umbilical cord-derived stem cells and his own bone marrow-derived stem cells. The cells were injected both intravenously and intrathecally (into the spinal fluid). During his stay in Panama and as part of his treatment protocol, Theo went to 19 physical therapy sessions over the course of month.

“I can definitely say that after the second injection, I immediately actually started getting some leg sensation and touch back from below my injury level. It was me lying in bed while my mother was putting my sock on my feet. I was actually able to feel that and it was pretty amazing because I haven’t had and feeling or sensation at all from my injury level of T-6. Now, more towards the end here, I have actually been able to have bladder sensation. I am a person that usually cath’ed myself every four hours but now because I do have this sensation coming back, I tend to wait until I have the need to have to go. So it can be anywhere from six to seven hours. If I need to drink a lot of water before coming to treatment, I know ahead of time whether I need to cath myself sooner or not.”

Allogeneic and autogolous stem cell therapy combined with physical rehabilitation: A case report on a chronically injured man with quadriplegia

Allogeneic and autogolous stem cell therapy combined with physical rehabilitation - A case report on a chronically injured man with quadriplegia

Daniel Leonard in Panama

This is a research paper written by Rebecca Johnston, Daniel Leonard’s sister. She recently graduated from a Physical Therapy degree program, and wrote her Capstone paper about Daniel’s stem cell therapy treatment in Panama.

Daniel is presented anonymously in the paper, but Rebecca and Daniel have given their permission for this paper to be shared. Daniel’s ASIA scores (pre and post treatment) are in the appendix of this paper.

 

Allogeneic and autogolous stem cell therapy combined with physical rehabilitation: A case report on a chronically injured man with quadriplegia

Abstract:

Background and Purpose: Stem cell therapy for SCI is a potentially promising treatment with increasing interest. This case report describes the use of a particular stem cell therapy protocol for a patient with chronic spinal cord injury, and describes his subsequent therapy and outcomes.

Case Description: The patient is a 29-year-old male who is chronically injured from a cervical spinal injury, resulting in quadriplegia. The patient was treated with a combined protocol of intrathecal (IT) and intravaneous (IV) allogeneic MSC and CD34+ cells and IT autologous BMMC at 6 ½ years post-injury. The results track the patient’s physical therapy progress until 6 months following stem cell treatment.

Outcomes: Recovery of strength in upper extremity and lower extremity muscle groups was noted, along with a functional increase in grip strength, ability to ambulate with assistance, and a significant decrease in daily medications.
Discussion: This case supports further investigation into treatment of chronically injured SCI patients with stem cell therapy followed by physical therapy.

Manuscript word count: 4321

A few highlights:

“After the patient underwent the stem cell treatment and returned to outpatient physical therapy in his hometown clinic in the United States, his MMT scores were tested over the period of 5 months post-stem cell treatment…. The patient did not decrease in strength in any of the muscles tested, and experienced improvements in 6/13 upper extremity muscle groups, and 8/9 lower extremity muscle groups.”

“The patient also had an increase in grip strength. His grip strength was measured by his occupational therapist to be 5 lbs on the right and 25 lbs on the left at one month before his stem cell treatment. Six months later, his grip strength was measured to be 22 lbs on the right and 36 lbs on the left. The patient reported that this increase in grip strength led to functional improvements, such as being able to self-catheterize, which he was completely unable to do since his injury.”

“The patient was also able to ambulate for the first time in 5 years at approximately 4 months after finishing his treatment. He was able to ambulate in partial weight bearing with the harness and max assist of two for 40 yards at .5 MPH.”


The original post on Daniel Leonard’s blog can be found here.

Stem cell treatments for autism: Kenneth Kelley

May 2013 – Update from April 2013 treatment

“I don’t know what is going on, but we are already seeing changes with Ken almost as much as our first stem cell treatment in 2009! I never expected this at this point in treatment!! Ken is so calm, this is fantastic, as two treatments ago, his aggression spiked!! Thank you, everyone for this treatment!”

“Just so you know (and I know) i am not crazy, i just had a long talk with Kens teacher and she is telling me how amazing the changes are already!!!! She is able to reason with him now instead of him losing his temper and his thought process is better, much more calm…she can’t believe the changes already. Ken goes to school in fort Lauderdale. She has had parents that do lots of other therapies, NEVER has she seen changes like with Ken thank you, stem cell institute. Tell everyone thank you”

July 2012 – Update

“Ken has gone to summer camp (overnight) for the week! He was so excited to go! Ken claims that he is no longer scared of the dark and can handle summer camp…It feels very strange to not have him home this week. He is having such a good time.

This is a major event in our lives. If you understand the type of autism Ken had, you would know what a miracle this is. To clarify, Ken is at camp on his own without any support or an aide–he is just like all the other campers. Pray for the families that are still struggling and cannot do this with their children. Stem cells have changed our lives.” – Marty Kelley (Ken’s mother)

By Rob Poindexter | WABI TV5

Last year, we told you about a 9-year-old autistic boy from Glenburn who traveled to Costa Rica for an unusual treatment. His family says he’s made remarkable progress.

A year ago, 9-year-old Kenneth Kelley couldn’t read. Prior to the age of 7, Kenneth couldn’t even talk. He was diagnosed with autism at an early age. Now his parents say he reads all the time. “It’s amazing,” says Marty Kelley, Kenneth’s mother, “he was no where near that even in December. He just started a little bit a month ago. He picked up the books and started reading.”

Kenneth Kelley - stem cells for autism patient

Kenneth Kelley – Stem Cells for Austim Patient

Kenneth’s road to recovery began three years ago, when his parents started him on hyberbaric oxygen therapy. Last August, they traveled to Costa Rica where Kenneth received stem cells from umbilical cord blood. It wasn’t long after the procedure the Kelley’s noticed a difference in Kenneth. “Immediately, we noticed within that two or three day time frame,” says his father Donald Kelley.

His parents say his sentence structure has improved and he’s more aware of his surroundings. He even remembers birthdays, days of the week and he can tell time. “We’ve just been waiting for the new things and the gains to stop coming and they’re not stopping. They’re coming every day,” says Marty Kelley.

Kenneth was the first child in Maine, and one of of less than a hundred nationwide, to receive the umbilical cord blood as a treatment for autism. But that didn’t scare the Kelleys. “We were excited for his future and we were scared of a life for him without stem cells and what the future would hold with just autism and no hope,” says Marty Kelley.

The family is heading to Central America for another round of the same treatment. They’re hoping the improvements they’ve seen are just the beginning. “It looks like the sky’s the limit,” she says, “especially with the reading, I never thought I’d see it happen. He’s also doing simple math problems. His teachers who hadn’t seen him in a year said he had improved tremendously.”

If you’d like to follow Kenneth’s progress, you can log onto the family’s blog.
http://www.ken’sjourneytorecovery.blogspot.com

Source: http://www.wabi.tv/news/12583/stem-cell-treatment-doing-wonders-for-autistic-glenburn-boy

2013-02-03T18:26:57+00:00 February 3rd, 2013|Autism, Patient Stories|

Stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury: Trish Stressman

Stem cell recipient Trish Stressman discusses her recovery from spinal cord injury after undergoing stem cell therapy at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, Panama. Ms. Stressman has regained control of her core and is now able to stand and walk with a walker.

I now have my abs, back, obliques, hip flexors, and glutes all contracting!

“My name is Trish Stressman. On May 26, 2007 I was in an ATV accident and suffered a burst fracture of my T-6 vertebrae, which left me with a bruised spinal cord. I was labeled a complete spinal cord injury with no movement or feeling below my T-6 injury line. Two years later I found out about Cell Medicine. I wish that I would have found out even earlier because it was great to have “hope” again. I went to Costa Rica for my stem cell treatment. The facilities there were great. They were very clean, professional, organized and modern. The Dr.’s at Cell Medicine and at the Cima Hospital were amazing. They always took lots of time with me and they truly cared about me and my recovery. I always felt safe and knew I could contact them at any time. The Physical Therapy there was also amazing. Within two months of getting the umbilical cord blood and my own bone marrow stem cells through intrathecal injections and IV’s I gained a lot. I now have my abs, back, obliques, hip flexors, and glutes all contracting! I am working now to bring them to full strength and they are almost there. I can stand for an hour now locking my own hips in place while not placing my hands on any support. My knees are not locking on their own yet but I hope to gain that back in the future.”

– Trish Stressman

Stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury: Juan Carlos Murillo

Juan Carlos Murillo is a commercial airline pilot who suffered spinal cord injuries in 4 separate areas of his spinal cord. Doctors told him that his injury was “complete” and that he would never walk again. After completing four rounds of stem cells at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, Panama, Juan Carlos is walking again, driving a car and has recently passed his commercial airline pilot physical examination. He expects to begin flying again for an airline within the next few months.

“The Stem Cell Institute states that stem cell therapy is not a miracle cure, but I think for us, the patients, our parents and all of our relatives, it is a miracle cure…”

UPDATE May 2011

Juan Carlos Murillo is a commercial airline pilot who suffered spinal cord injuries in 4 separate areas of his spinal cord. Doctors told him that his injury was “complete” and that he would never walk again. After completing four rounds of stem cells at the Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, Panama, Juan Carlos is walking again, driving a car and has recently passed his commercial airline pilot physical examination. He expects to begin flying again for an airline within the next few months.

“The Stem Cell Institute states that stem cell therapy is not a miracle cure, but I think for us, the patients, our parents and all of our relatives, it is a miracle cure…” – Juan Carlos Murillo

Before he received stem cells, from the waist down, Juan Carlos had no sensation, no movement and was suffering from significant neuropathic pain. He was classified a ASIA “A”. After his first course of stem cells in November 2008, his neuropathic pain was reduced on a scale of 1 to 10 from a 10 beforehand to a 3 afterwards.

His second course of stem cells in February 2009, Juan Carlos starting experiencing movement in his left leg and feeling in certain areas of his leg. He also started gaining muscle mass.
At the time of his third round in June 2009, Juan Carlo was driving an automatic car with his left leg and taking his first steps with a walker and crutches. He had about 80% sensitivity in his left leg.

Juan Carlos received his fourth round in November 2010. By that time, he had recovered his right leg and discontinued using crutches to walk. He was now able to walk with a cane and drive his manual transmission car. He now competes in 4×4 races.

He has now passed his commercial pilot physical. He has started flying again and expects to be employed once more as a commercial pilot within the next one or two months.

November 2010
I am a commercial pilot. On May 13th of 2008 was in a plane crash in the town of Cartago in Costa Rica. As a result of this accident I suffered a complete lesion at L1 and fracture of T12, L1 and L2. I had two surgeries in Costa Rica and one in Chile to stabilize my spine leaving me with 8 screws and 4 titanium rods from T11 to L3 and a titanium spacer for my L1 vertebrae. After this my condition did not improve. I had complete paralysis from the hips down, suffered from neuropathic pain, which on scale from 0 to 10, most commonly reached 10. After returning from my last surgery I was offered stem cell treatment with stem cells from umbilical cord which began in October 2008 with five intrathecal (lumbar puncture) injections. A few weeks after finishing this treatment my neuropathic pain become less common and mostly low-intensity. I also regained bladder control. I received a second treatment in February 2009 with 5 other applications. After this I began to notice changes in my legs with some muscle contractions and sensitivity in certain places. I continued my physical therapy and was able to have better contractions and started to regain strength and contractions in new places. I also regained my bowel function and sexual function. My last treatment was in June 2009 with five intrathecal and 2 intravenous injections of stem cells. After this treatment I could stand up and take a few steps on crutches because I had regained enough strength in my left leg and had already started to have movement in my right leg. As of this writing (October, 2010) I am able to walk without any aids or appliances. I have recovered almost 100% of my right leg and over 80% of my left leg. I have resumed my daily activities like driving and walking. I recently I passed my physical exam and now can fly again. In recent tests and pictures taken of my spinal column there is still a lesion at L1 but I continue walking. I am continuing to recover day by day while in the next few days I will go back for another treatment with the hope that I will be able to be as normal as possible.

Stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury: CBS News – Gina McLoud

Working to Walk Again
Chris McKinnon – CBS News KRE TV

A year ago Brandy Moss was just like any 16 year old. Moss doesn’t remember the car accident that left her paralyzed from the chest down, only what doctors told her at the hospital.

She explained, “I was going to pick my mom up from work and I went over a hill, the guy was on my side of the road and we just clashed.”

Moss does not like to look backwards so she continues to focus on what is ahead for her, “Even if it’s just little ways like helping me move
my fingers or something, even if it’s not walking, it would make life
so much easier.”

Her sights are now set on a stem-cell procedure, which is available in Panama.

Moss explained, “It’s my chance to walk.”

Gina McLoud, from Delta knows first hand how important this procedure can be. She’s had two stem cell procedures done, the first said, gave her results within a month. Once confined to her wheelchair, McLoud is now able to stand and walk but it hasn’t come easy.

She explained, “It’s not a miracle, it’s not a cure. You have to work
very hard.”

McLoud spends two to three hours a day in the gym, five days a week
making sure her muscles stay stimulated. As she continues to gain strength, she wants to dispel some of the myths about stem cell treatment, which she said has a stigma attached because of
misconceptions. For instance, her stem cell procedure uses adult stem cells and her own blood marrow.

Now McLoud serves as an inspiration for someone like Brandy Moss who hopes to one day walk again.

Since this stem cell treatment is not available in the United States, it’s extremely costly: about $30,000.

There is an auction to help raise money for Brandy Moss’s this Saturday, August 6th, at Zack’s Barbeque in Hotchkiss starting at 8am.

You can also make donation at the Delta County Federal Credit Union.