Stroke – Brain Paralysis

İnme-Felç-Beyin Felci

What is Stroke & How is it Treated with Stem Cell?

Stroke is usually caused by sudden interruption of the blood flow that supplies oxygen and glucose to a region of the brain, and sometimes by bleeding into the brain tissue. Inspired by a heart attack, there are also those who call this ‘brain attack’. In this case, temporary or permanent damage to the brain cells occurs. Permanent damage to the cells may result in permanent loss of function in the region of the body which is controlled by these cells; e.g., when the cells that control the function of movement in the right brain are damaged, a complete or partial stroke that causes weakness in the arm and leg on the left side of our body occurs.

Stroke Symptoms:

Weakness on one or both sides of the body: Often occurs in arms, legs, hands and face. In arms and legs, usually either the left or right side is affected. Loss of sensation on one or both sides of the body: Some people may experience loss of sensation, numbness and tingling in some parts of the body. Speech difficulties: A person who had a stroke will have slowed speech, lisp or sometimes have difficulty in  finding the right words. Some people find it difficult to understand what is spoken. Change of consciousness: Unconsciousness, drowsiness, not being aware of what is going on around him/her, inability to understand questions s/he has been asked and things s/he is asked to do can be seen. Visual impairments: People who had a stroke may experience double vision, loss of vision in one eye, right or left visual field. Sudden headache: One may experience idiopathic sudden headache, headache, nausea, vomiting and balance problems.

Current Treatments of Stroke-Brain Paralysis:

Intravenous Thrombolysis: In the emergency treatment of stroke, the brain blood flow that has deteriorated due to the occlusion of the vein feeding the brain needs to be corrected quickly. In treatment, every minute as from the moment of stroke is very important. Intravenous clot-busting drug treatment (intravenous thrombolytic therapy) is the application of intravenous clot-busting medication that can be performed within no later than the first 4.5 hours after the onset of paralysis symptoms. For this purpose, a recombinant, i.e. produced by genetic engineering, tissue plasminogen activator (rtPA) is used as a medication. Ideally, it should be administered as soon as possible. This treatment breaks down clots and helps the blood flow to get back to normal rapidly and effectively hence the stroke is resolved.  If the patient’s condition is not suitable for the administration of this treatment or if the time elapsed since the occurrence of stroke is prolonged, intravenous clot-busting treatment cannot be performed. Your doctor will refer to other medications and methods for treatment. Endovascular Treatments: If the main veins feeding the brain have been occluded with clots, the clot-busting drug, i.e. intrareveous trombolysis, administered by venous route to break down the clot mass inside these large veins, would not be sufficient. In this case, the main purpose of the treatment is to break down the clot inside the vessel or remove it from the vessel. Treatments for this purpose are called endovascular or interventional treatments and are performed by angiography. This treatment should be performed within the first 8 hours after the onset of stroke. Intraarterial Clot-Busting Drug Treatment (Intraarterial Thrombolysis): By angiographic method, a thin and flexible catheter is introduced through the groin into the artery, where it is advanced toward the vessels feeding the brain and the occluded vein causing the stroke and the clot occluding it are reached. A low-dose of clot-busting drug, rtPA, is administered directly into or near the clot. This method is usually an adjunctive treatment method today. Mechanic Clot Removal Treatment (Thrombectomy): By angiographic method, a thin and flexible catheter is introduced through the groin into the artery, where it is advanced toward the vessels feeding the brain and the occluded vein causing the stroke and the clot occluding it are reached. The clot occluding the vessel is aspirated from inside the vessel using special catheters with a large diameter or held and removed using special retractable stents from inside the vessel.  

Stem Cell Treatment Method

Stem cells have the ability to turn into nerve, brain and muscle cells they have touched so they are used in the treatment of stroke. The stem cells transplanted into the patient are stem cells that genetically do not carry this disorder. Therefore, they replace the damaged cells. The body’s defense system is strengthened and the swelling of the veins in the neck and brain area is completely prevented or reduced. In this way, they may slow the progression of the disease, completely stop it and make it regress. The success rate of the treatment is proportional to the patient’s age, the duration of the disease and the patient’s condition. If the disease has severely progressed, treatment may need to be applied more than once. The first target in the treatment of stroke is to prevent further progression of the disease and take measures accordingly. Physical therapy is the most common and most appropriate treatment modality. Exercises help to soften the joints the patient has been unable to move, and this makes them easier to move after some time. Physical therapy should be performed regularly. It may become challenging for the patient from time to time, but if it is performed regularly, the patient is sure to benefit from it.Joint movements are seen more clearly and a significant progress is made in movement compared to the former state. Medical treatment is performed if deemed appropriate. Medical therapies do not prevent the application of stem cell therapy. Medications used to soften a patient’s stiffened and rigid joints constitute preparation for therapy. If we talk about surgery, surgeries are not risky and show signs of recovery in a short time.Disorders in the joints are repaired in a short period of time and there will be significant progress in movement. This disease can be treated in our GenCell stem cell therapy clinic in Kiev, Ukraine.

Method of administration:

The number of cells to be administered is determined according to the age and weight of the patient. Treatment is carried out using mesenchymal stem cells (derived from the patient’s own adipose tissue or bone marrow) or fetal stem cells. The treatment of the patient is decided according to the condition of the patient. It can be performed in 3 sessions 45 days apart or in 4 consecutive days. They can be administered intravenously (by vascular access) and a certain amount of injection to a vessel leading to the brain can be preferred. The treatment protocol is completely adjusted according to the patient’s condition and a different protocol may be applied for each patient.

Success Rates in Treatment

The size of the administered stem cells is small enough to pass through the brain cells. Therefore, the success rate of the treatment increases significantly in early diagnosis.  Previous studies reported a very high percentage of positive results with stem cell therapy. This treatment significantly prevented progression to further phases of the disease in 79% of the patients and helped to resolve the existing serious condition.

Scientific Studies:

  1. Lee, J. S., Hong, J. M., Moon, G. J., Lee, P. H., Ahn, Y. H., & Bang, O. Y. (2010). A long‐term follow‐up study of intravenous autologous mesenchymal stem cell transplantation in patients with ischemic stroke. Stem cells28(6), 1099-1106.
  2. Bang, O. Y., Lee, J. S., Lee, P. H., & Lee, G. (2005). Autologous mesenchymal stem cell transplantation in stroke patients. Annals of neurology57(6), 874-882.
  3. Chen, D. C., Lin, S. Z., Fan, J. R., Lin, C. H., Lee, W., Lin, C. C., … & Lee, C. C. (2014). Intracerebral implantation of autologous peripheral blood stem cells in stroke patients: a randomized phase II study. Cell transplantation23(12), 1599-1612.
  4. Honmou, O., Houkin, K., Matsunaga, T., Niitsu, Y., Ishiai, S., Onodera, R., … & Kocsis, J. D. (2011). Intravenous administration of auto serum-expanded autologous mesenchymal stem cells in stroke. Brain134(6), 1790-1807.
  5. Honmou, O., Onodera, R., Sasaki, M., Waxman, S. G., & Kocsis, J. D. (2012). Mesenchymal stem cells: therapeutic outlook for stroke. Trends in molecular medicine18(5), 292-297.
  6. Battistella, V., de Freitas, G. R., da Fonseca, L. M. B., Mercante, D., Gutfilen, B., Goldenberg, R. C., … & Alves-Leon, S. V. (2011). Safety of autologous bone marrow mononuclear cell transplantation in patients with nonacute ischemic stroke. Regenerative medicine6(1), 45-52.

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