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stem cell treatment in MS

heapsreal

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Tonight i saw on 60mins tv show here, a woman diagnosed with MS who couldnt get the treatment she needed here due to beaurocrating crap, so they spent a fortune to fly over to russia and treated by a doctor over there very familiar with this sort of treatment. This woman got told she had an 80% chance of recovery at the stage she is at now, she has had MS i guess for a few years

Long story short the treatment was a success. she underwent chemo heavy duty for 4 days, prior to this they extracted her own stem cells and treated them in some way then froze them for later use. Not long after the chemo treatments were finished they infused the stem cells. The doctor said 6-12months to get recovered. This lady prior was mostly in a wheel chair and used a wheelie walker most of the time, u could see she was in alot of pain and had incredible fatigue. Im unsure of the time frame after the treatment, at a guess say 6 months and she is back running along the beach with her hubby, exercising etc which were her passions prior to getting MS.

It was great to see someone recoverying from such a crappy state and a real shame that the health system refused to do it here because its not generally accepted treatment. After doing some googling , this type of treatment is being done in many places and for the last 10 years in australia.

I know its MS but i find these things very promising for us, one day these treatments will cross over to us too i think. Dr cheney from memory was trialling something like this but i can only imagine it being tied up in red tape, cost etc.

cheers!!!
 

anciendaze

Senior Member
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Dr. Cheney's patients were able to afford stem cell treatment, though he had it done in another country where hospital care was cheaper. There were some encouraging results, but no cures. The problem is that we still don't know what is causing the original problem. If the cause was infectious, and you don't remove infected cells hiding in tissues, then it is only a matter of time until they reinfect the new immune cells. You need to target the cause to get cures. That means you have to have a much better idea of the cause than at present.
 

heapsreal

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I was thinking of some recent ms research showing ebv to be a possible cause as some were responding to antivirals. Maybe that was the idea behind chemo was to kill ebv infected cells then add the stem cells. I'm just assuming. Or like organ transplant where one uses antivirals for several months afterwards. I suppose there's a few combinations? ?
 

anciendaze

Senior Member
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You might read the paper on adoptive immunotherapy for secondary progressive MS described in this article. In order to get sufficiently specific targeting they had to stimulate T-cells that targeted cells with three specific markers. This report is virtually unique, because, for almost all cases of progressive MS, treatment merely delays morbidity and mortality as long as possible. This case showed it was possible to dramatically reverse symptoms without adverse reactions. I can't think of another example.
 

Bob

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You might read the paper on adoptive immunotherapy for secondary progressive MS described in this article. In order to get sufficiently specific targeting they had to stimulate T-cells that targeted cells with three specific markers. This report is virtually unique, because, for almost all cases of progressive MS, treatment merely delays morbidity and mortality as long as possible. This case showed it was possible to dramatically reverse symptoms without adverse reactions. I can't think of another example.
That's a very interesting result!
 

Sushi

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@heapsreal

A friend here had progressive MS that was not responding to treatment. He (and 20 others) went to MD Anderson cancer center in Houston. Here is the trial he was in: http://www.halt-ms.org/forpatients.html

Basically it was chemo and a stem cell transplant. It has halted his MS and each year since has brought gradual improvements. The immune system was "reset" through chemo wiping out the immune system and removing the suspect T-cells, then stem cells from his own bone marrow were reintroduced.

Radical, but he was down to very few choices.

Sushi
 

Sushi

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I don't know about anyone else but I'd be prepared to do it if I got the chance - anything is better than this half life......
Are you listening Wessley?

In the US it would set you back about $150,000! My friend actually papered the walls of a whole room with insurance rejections--just for fun! :vomit:

Sushi
 

Ema

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Wonder if you could get the check ups covered here? Once you'd *had* the procedure, it would be hard to deny them as experimental and/or medically unnecessary.

150k actually seems cheap for all it entails...in this system.
 

Sushi

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After my friend had paid out of pocket, he made so much noise that his insurance company is now covering the procedure for other MS patients--but he didn't get reimbursed. :confused:

Sushi
 

anciendaze

Senior Member
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Just wanted to point out a significant difference between that stem cell treatment and the adoptive immunotherapy I mentioned earlier: the latter had no adverse effects.

While the overall outcome of the chemo followed by stem cell treatment you are describing was positive for that particular patient, it could hardly be said to be without adverse effects. The chemo essentially destroys the patient's damaged immune system, which you then hope to replace with one that is less damaged. This is a horrendous experience like severe chemo for cancer. You probably would not try this for anything that was less than a matter of life or death. What I'm getting at is the possibility of a therapy that never goes downhill in the first place. It should also become cheaper, because it does not require the expensive hospitalization while the immune system is rebuilding itself and the patient is extremely vulnerable to infection.

To me this looks like therapy which can be scaled up to treat more people. The main problem is knowing exactly what cells to target.
 

Sushi

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Just wanted to point out a significant difference between that stem cell treatment and the adoptive immunotherapy I mentioned earlier: the latter had no adverse effects.

While the overall outcome of the chemo followed by stem cell treatment you are describing was positive for that particular patient, it could hardly be said to be without adverse effects. The chemo essentially destroys the patient's damaged immune system, which you then hope to replace with one that is less damaged. This is a horrendous experience like severe chemo for cancer. You probably would not try this for anything that was less than a matter of life or death. What I'm getting at is the possibility of a therapy that never goes downhill in the first place. It should also become cheaper, because it does not require the expensive hospitalization while the immune system is rebuilding itself and the patient is extremely vulnerable to infection.

To me this looks like therapy which can be scaled up to treat more people. The main problem is knowing exactly what cells to target.

Very true, my friend was basically dying. It was a really tough experience to go through and he had been told that there was a 5% risk of death in the procedure. Not something to do casually.

Sushi
 

natasa778

Senior Member
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1,774
There is a clinic in Austria doing stem cell treatments for 10,000 euros. I am not sure if the procedure is the same as in that Russian clinic at the beginning of the thread, probably not, and it definitely does not include chemo. I believe the same is the case in Ukraine.
 

maryb

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The Cheyney patients who went for stem cell treatment didn't receive chemo.......