ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease is a devastating disease that affects the neuromuscular system resulting in muscle weakness with eventual difficulty swallowing and breathing. For patients suffering with this condition many of the trreatments are palliative to improve function like rehabilitation. Some of my patients in the recent past have seeked stem cell based therapies in foreign countries like Costa Rica. One patient received Bone Marrow Stem Cells along with Menstural cells which were injected into his spine. These patients termed “pioneer patients” are driving change & are increasing awareness by describing their experiences. Unfortunately his treatment was not successful. However perhaps it won’t be long before Americans won’t have to travel abroad for these procedures.
According to CNNthe first US FDA approved trial (Neuralstem) utilizing 8 week fetal tissue for stem cells is taking place. The researchers are very noble in their efforts & the patients are very brave. However these patients have little options to reverse the effects of their disease.