Neuropathies are characterized by damage to the nerves. There are three types of neuropathy; peripheral, cranial and autonomic. Autonomic neuropathy occurs when nerves that control the heart and circulation are damaged.
Transplantation of stem cells is a very promising approach for the treatment of different neuropathies. Treatment at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute could help improve the symptoms of autonomic neuropathy including:
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Dizziness when standing
- High blood pressure
- Difficulty breathing
- Difficulty urinating
- Difficulty swallowing
- Unexplained weight loss
- Nausea, vomiting or bloating
- Vaginal dryness
- Difficulty orgasming
- Change in pupil size
What is autonomic neuropathy?
Neuropathy is a general term to used describe any condition that results in damage to one or more nerves. Injury or disease can damage the nerves at any location, and the type of neuropathy is typically classified by the location of the damaged nerves, or by the disease causing the damage. Nerves control the heart and circulation are autonomic nerves. Autonomic neuropathy is a result of damage to the nerves that carry information from the brain and spinal cord; to the heart, blood vessels, bladder, intestines and sweat glands.
Possible causes of autonomic neuropathy include:
- Bone marrow disorders
- Kidney disease
- Inherited nerve disorders
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson’s disease
- Spinal cord injury
Treatment to reverse nerve damage is typically not possible. Current treatment options can be complicated, involving medication, lifestyle changes and possibly surgery and focus only on managing your symptoms and preventing further problems. How well you do will depend on the cause of the problem.
Can stem cell therapy improve symptoms of autonomic neuropathy?
There is no cure for neuropathy and currently available therapeutic approaches only treat the symptoms of the disease. Mesenchymal stem cells produce; 1. proteins that support the growth and survival of neurons, 2. angiogenic factors that are essential for the healing, growth, development, and maintenance of blood vessels, and 3. immunomodulatory substances that can reverse the damage to the nerves.1,2
Researchers evaluated the use of mesenchymal stem cells to treat Multiple system atrophy (MSA), a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a combination of symptoms that affect both the autonomic nervous system and movement. MSA is a devastating disease with an average life expectancy of only 9 years after diagnosis. The study demonstrated that MSC therapy in patients with MSA was safe and delayed the progression of neurological deficits with achievement of functional improvement and improved quality of life during the12 month follow up.3
What type of stem cells are used?
The Stem Cells Transplant Institute uses autologous adipose derived mesenchymal stem cells for the treatment of peripheral neuropathy. Autologous means the stem cells are collected from the recipient so the risk of rejection is virtually eliminated. Mesenchymal stem cells are one type of adult stem cells that are found in a variety of tissues including; adipose tissue, lung, bone marrow, and blood. There are large numbers of stem cells in subcutaneous adipose tissue, and this tissue is easy to obtain without a painful procedure, Mesenchymal stem cells are a promising treatment for peripheral neuropathy. Treatment at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute may improve the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy.
How are the stem cells collected?
A team of stem cell experts developed an FDA approved method and protocol for harvesting and isolating adipose derived stem cells for autologous reimplantation. It is this FDA approved method that we use at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute. The collection and use of adult stem cells does not require the destruction of embryos and for this reason, more U.S. federal funding is being spent on stem cell research.
How are the stem cells administered?
The stem cells are administered by intravenous and intrathecal injection.
About the Stem Cells Transplant Institute
Costa Rica has one of the best healthcare systems in world and is ranked among the highest for medical tourism. Using the most advanced technologies, the team of experts at The Stem Cells Transplant Institute believes in the potential of stem cell therapy for the treatment of neuropathy. We are committed to providing personalized service and the highest quality of care to every patient. Contact the experts at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute to see if stem cell treatment might help you.
1.Cell Death Discovery (2016) 2, e16055; doi:10.1038/cddiscovery.2016.55; published online 11 July 2016 Mesenchymal stem cells to treat diabetic neuropathy: a long and strenuous way from bench to the clinic JY Zhou 2. Han, JW et al., Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Improve Diabetic Neuropathy by Direct Modulation of Both Angiogenesis and Myelination in Peripheral Nerves. Cell transplant. 2016;25(2):313-26. doi: 10.3727/096368915X688209. Epub 2015 May 13 3. Le PH et al., Autologous Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapy Delays the Progression of Neurological Deficits in Patients With Multiple System Atrophy. Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics (2008). 83. 5, 723-730.