Stem Cell Therapy for COPD
Causes and Symptoms of COPD
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is a degenerative condition of the lungs and includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. This terminal disease is diagnosed in 14 million Americans but millions more suffer from COPD who are not diagnosed.
Over time, long term injury to the parnechyma results in restricted airways and hyperinflation of the lungs. The thickening of airways increases airway resistance resulting in air trapping. These progressive changes in the lungs decrease quality of life and lead to disability. Emphysema is profoundly caused by smoking and unfortunately, long after the smoke exposure ceases, the inflammatory process persists. There are other causes of COPD such as long standing asthma, chronic bronchitis, history of pneumonia as a child and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Scar tissue gradually takes over healthy functional tissue making it more difficult for the lungs to do their job of taking in oxygen and expelling CO2.
Symptoms of COPD include shortness of breath, reduced exercise tolerance, fatigue, and chronic wet cough. Unfortunately, there is no cure for COPD, so the condition is terminal.
Current Treatments of COPD
Medical treatments revolve around around controlling symptoms. Steroids are used to suppress the immune system by controlling mucus production and expanding airways. Antibiotics are given for recurring lung infections such as pneumonia. The downside of these treatments is increased risk for infections like colds and flus, and cancer due to long term suppression of the immune system. These medications simply control the symptoms and further weaken the patient’s immune system and lung tissue integrity. Unfortunately, this medical model makes COPD terminal.
Stem Cell IV Therapy for COPD
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC’s) are showing promising results for COPD patients, even in advanced patients. The mesenchymal stem cells modulate the immune system by inhibiting the overactive chemicals such as IL-6 and enhancing the regulatory T cells. The MSCs stimulate the body’s own regenerative and repair capabilities in the areas of injured tissue. The stem cells travel to the lungs via paracrine signaling to secrete growth factors and cytokines to begin repair. For more information on how stem cells work see our FAQ page.
Umbilical cord derived stem cells (UCB-MSC’s) have the advantage over bone marrow derived stem cells (BM-MSC’s) and adipose derived stem cells due to their smaller size. This prevents possible pulmonary entrapment that has occured with some infusions of BM-MSC’s and adipose stem cells. In addition, adipose derived stem cells pose increased risks for infection. Most COPD patients are older and generally unhealthy. The bone marrow and adipose derived stem cells from the patient reflect the poor health of the host. UCB-MSC’s are just 9 months old and have been shown to be more robust than the host’s less viable stem cells and respond strongly to paracrine signaling compared to the host stem cells.
Cost of stem cell therapy for COPD
When researching stem cell clinics for COPD, it is important to ask about the number of stem cells offered and the viability. Most labs are unable to provide the high number needed for COPD. Clinical trials show 1-2 million stem cells per Kg of body weight are necessary to achieve a positive outcome. For this amount of stem cells a patient can expect to spend $10,000 up to $35,000 if you choose to go outside of the U.S. for treatment.
What Results can I expect?
The stem cell IV for COPD is simple and results may be seen quickly. Results vary depending on the progression of the disease, age, and overall health. As with any regenerative treatment, the earlier in the course of disease process, the better the outcome. One study showed over 82% of patients given stem cells noticeable improvements in their quality of life and being able to reduce the need for oxygen therapy. Clinical trials are under way that have proven safety and are showing positive results.
For more information on how this treatment can help you call 480-334-8278 or click here to request a complimentary consult with the physician.
The use of treatments on this site require doctor evaluation and laboratory testing along with consideration of the risks, benefits, and other options before they are recommneded or prescribed. No offer is being made for any treatment without undergoing a medical records review or clinical work up, discussion of the nature of the evidence, risks, and benefits for a therapeutic approach specific to the patient including a discussion of treatment options. Therapies may be designed to strengthen the lungs, rather than as specific treatments for a certain medical condition.