Tag Archives: Stem-cell therapy

More adventures in Hyperbaricland

Hyperbaric New FocusAs I wrote previously hyperbaric oxygen helps the stem cells proliferate after insertion and it looks like the mechanism is an increase in Nitric oxide.  Dr. Marshall Ravden, the stem cell implant surgeon gave me a prescription for 40 sessions of hyperbaric oxygen, necessarily taken over a narrow period of time to consolidate the stem cell benefits.  They suggested renting or purchasing a unit, but I could just see telling Larry that our apartment dining room was to be taken over by a 7’x4′ diameter inflated hyperbaric chamber and that the cat would need to be relegated to the bedroom! Not gonna happen.

The good 100% oxygen chambers almost all seemed to be in hospitals where they only took insurance (at $2000 a pop!) but I found one in Queens and another,  New Focus Hyperbaric in Great Neck where a GroupOn special was going on.  The chamber, shown above, was clear, had a television to distract me, was not quite as large as I had hoped but had a full-time compassionate attendant so I wouldn’t be deserted as happened in the Manhattan soft chamber.  Sessions last about 2 hours.

Now I occasionally suffer from claustrophobia in airplanes, but it is easily remedied by sitting in an aisle seat so I can walk around and I use Stand-Up MRI if I need radiology, so it rarely happens to bother me.  I used to scuba dive so I knew what pressure felt like and how to clear my ears.  So I got my required chest X-ray and was cleared by the resident neurologist.  But the second trip in threw me into a tizzy:  the bottom of my foot itched, it was in hard spasm and annoyingly Bobby Jindall was being endlessly interviewed on CNN.  I had the attendant talk me down a few times then came out to relax before going in again.  I went in for another try but didn’t spend much time at full pressure.  The next day I had a panic attack on the subway which I have been riding without incident for 35 years so cancelled my session.  I felt claustrophobic lying in bed surrounded by my comforter or when listening to dissonant New Music on NPR- the claustrophobia was leaking into my life.  (At least it gives me more insight into what patients are going through!)   I asked for suggestions on Facebook and my wonderful friends gave suggestions in troves.

The suggestions ran the gamut from sedatives to acupuncture treatments, homeopathics to cell-level visualizations, prayers to reiki, breathing patterns to a reminder that this was a First World Problem I was lucky to have .  A few people suggested that I was repressing something -honestly I think it is just that I fill up a chamber more than a smaller person and can move around less.  Three people jumped in instantly with the words from Frank Herbert’s Litany of Fear, when I requested it.  I  did EFT tapping and bled my UB luo point, inserted needles at LI2 and H5, did breathing exercises gave myself a shot of a skullcap formula and liberally breathed in essential oil of lavender.  I also requested a prescription for a sedative and asked for puppies and kittens instead of the news on TV.  Animal Planet was unaccountably playing the World’s Filthiest Jobs that day which included scraping hides at a tannery, so that didn’t work.  This time I spent a half hour at full pressure plus 15 minutes of pressurization.  The attendant decided to lower the wedge and ditch the knee pillow so I would have more room next time. And he cleared me to bring in a sippy cup which I filled with coconut water and a vanilla bean found to decrease claustrophobia in a German study,

And the sedatives, with more space, made the difference.  I still reminded myself that it was a First World Problem and tried chants, prayers and breathing patterns.  I whistled songs.  I sipped.  And I relaxed. I might not be a pill person but I need the oxygen more than I need to be an herbal purist. It has worked twice.

 

 

And if you would be so kind as to help fund my Parkinson’s stem cell transplant and hyperbaric treatments: http://www.gofundme.com/eg4ymk

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The Stem Cell Implant

Karen Rita Alexander and Dr RavdenSo I had the procedure yesterday. In the morning they took blood and did the mini liposection. I was sedated without loss of consciousness. It was laparoscopic with two tiny incisions, filled with saline and epinepherine then fat cells were extracted. They wrapped my abdomen in a stiff binder and took me to the recovery room. After recovery, while the cells were processed, laser and enzyme activated and mixed with Platelet Rich Plasma, they gave me an infusion of mannose to open the blood brain barrier. Apparently they started this practice before having used the intranasal administration and found great improvement in neurological patients.

The cells came back in a mini IV bag of pink liquid and a group of syringes, one for each of the points we had selected and a catheter for the bladder (the only real painful procedure.) I prevailed upon him to stick me at St. 36 for stamina and he was already using Liver 3 for my toe that has been bursting through the cartilage since the Parkinson’s Walk two years ago.

The IV was somewhat curtailed since I have small veins. The nurse decided that I already had a few billion stem cells, so she drew it out of the IV tube into the syringe. I considered self-injection (and ought to have asked for the doctor to inject more into my chronically stiff neck. )

There is more and the staff was interested in how acupuncture can reduce scars and deal with neurological conditions. The medical director said she was told by a Chinese acupuncturist that acupuncture stimulates the activity of stem cells (albeit at a lower concentration.) Silberstein, M. (2009). The cutaneous intrinsic visceral afferent nervous system: A new model for acupuncture analgesia. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 261(4), 637–642. doi:10.1016/j.jtbi.2009.09.008

 

And if you would be so kind as to help fund my Parkinson’s stem cell transplant: http://www.gofundme.com/eg4ymk

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Experimental Treatment for Parkinson’s

Diseases and conditions where stem cell treatm...
Diseases and conditions where stem cell treatment is promising or emerging. (See Wikipedia:Stem cell#Treatments). Bone marrow transplantation is, as of 2009, the only established use of stem cells. Model: Mikael Häggström. To discuss image, please see Template talk:Häggström diagrams (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease 6 years ago. I am working as an acupuncturist, herbalist and health writer, which all require a steady hand. I have been helping run free clinics since 9-11 and do a lot of public health education on Facebook and my blog Natural Health by Karen and teach as an adjunct professor at NY College for the Health Professions. My private practice specializes in complicated conditions which is rewarding but not lucrative. At best this is a breakeven proposition so my funding for treatment is limited. I have mastered the art of ambidextrous needling and the tremor only happens at rest but the tremor is starting to spread to the other side and it will eventually affect my ability to treat patients.

I have found a promising experimental stem cell trial by StemGenex in La Jolla, California that has a special affinity for Parkinson’s and other neurological diseases. Unlike most stem cell treatment centers they use an intranasal administration to get stem cells to the brain, either traversing or signalling beyond the blood brain barrier.The treatment was pioneered for Alzheimer’s and works for that disease. They do this along with intravenous and direct injections and their internal statistics on Parkinson’s patients are much better than others since getting the stem cells into the brain is difficult. I would like to participate in the trial for this promising procedure.

I have been pre-approved for treatment but insurance will not cover experimental procedures (and trials on procedures are not covered by drug companies!)

The cost of treatment is $15,900 plus air fare of $800 and $1000 for a course of hyperbaric treatment as aftercare.

I will write in detail about the experience, documenting it with video and making medical information available regardless of outcome. This will help others considering stem cell treatment. I will focus on what can be done to enhance the treatment, based on interviews with patients, doctors and my own experiences.

If you know someone with Parkinson’s, would like to advance the medicine, want to help me or just want to do a mitzvah, I would be very grateful. If you know someone else who might help please pass this on.

Thank you for reading this far. I must acknowledge that I am a bit bewildered by this new way of dealing with health care (and hope it doesn’t sound tacky to ask for help,) but I appreciate your interest.

Donations to Paypal at ksvaughan2@aol.com  or Go Fund Me

See also:

Nutrition for Parkinson’s Disease- Part 1

2

Watermelon and Papaya for Parkinson’s

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