View Full Version : Surgical Stem Cell (Adult) Treatment For Scoliosis

10-22-2010, 05:38 AM
Link (2008): http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/health&id=6180530

NEW YORK (WABC) -- There is an exciting new treatment for scoliosis that's a lot less painful.

At age 14, Matthew Barmore is already 6-foot-1 with a passion for basketball. But just a few months ago, Matthew's doctor saw a problem, a nearly 50-degree curvature in his spine. The diagnosis - scoliosis.

"Before surgery, the lump on his back caused by the spine curvature was about the span of both my hands together," Matthew's mom, Rebecca Barmore, said.

"If the curve progresses, it can have profound effects on heart and lung function," said Dr. Mark Flood, of Banner Desert Hospital.

Surgery to correct scoliosis used to mean cutting a large piece of bone from the iliac crest in the pelvis, then using it to create a spinal fusion so the curve didn't get worse.

"The problem with taking bone from the iliac crest is it's a significant source of pain, sometimes even permanent pain," Dr. Flood said. "It requires another incision, potential risk of infection, and that bone is gone forever."

But Matthew was able to take advantage of a brand new therapy, recently cleared by the FDA, to repair his spine using stem cells harvested from his own bone marrow.

Used with bone from the bone bank, Matthew's stem cells would act as a sort of catalyst to support the growth of new bone along the spine, and work with permanent screws and rods to fuse it into the correct position.

The surgery reduced Matthew's curvature from nearly 50 degrees to just 15 degrees.

And just three months after surgery, Matthew was already playing one-on-one with twin brother Jordan, getting stronger every day.

"I'm able to shoot, dribble, run, jump," he said. "If this is any indication of what's going to happen, I think it will just get better."

And now, Matthew is dreaming of a very big future.

10-22-2010, 06:58 AM
I wonder if stem cell research is being done for non surgical treatment of scoliosis? Seems like it would be. Meanwhile, I was surprised to discover how wide ranging adult stem cell therapy actually is. Treatment for Osteoarthritis and DDD is certainly encouraging. Adult stem cell therapies include:

In Germany, Adult Stem Cell Therapy is used for : ALS, Alzheimer's, Autism, Cardiovascular diseases, Cerebral palsy, COPD, Critical Limb Ischemia, Diabetes, ED, Liver Damage, Macular degeneration, Mutiple sclerosis, CCSVI, Osteoarthritis, Parkinson, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke. http://www.xcell-center.com/

In the US: ALS, Alzheimer's, Autism, Cerebral Palsy, DDD, ED, Glaucoma, Hearing Loss, Heart Disease, Huntington's, Kidney Failure, Macular Degeneration, MD, Optic Nerve Injuries, Parkinson's Disease, Pulmonary Fibrosis, Retinitis Pigmentosa, Spinal Cord Induries, Stroke, Diabetes, Lupus, MS, RA, Epstein-Barr, Hepatitis, HIV, Osteoarthritis ... and - Hair Loss, Facelifts, Breast Augmentation & Buttock Lifts! http://www.stem-cell-center.com/

10-22-2010, 10:32 AM
It's important for people to understand that this stem cell treatment is actually just a bone graft substitute (like BMP, but made with adult human stem cells). It still requires fusion with rods and screws, wires, or hooks.

10-22-2010, 05:14 PM
Yes - I hope the article made that clear? What impressed me is that the adult stem cell (from bone marrow), seems to speed fusion? I don't know, but the article seemed to indicate that.

I wonder how adult stem cells are used in the treatment of Osteoarthritis?

10-22-2010, 09:13 PM
There is no proof that stem cells speed fusion.

10-22-2010, 11:52 PM
Web Link:

Found an Interview with Dr. Flood who says he uses this method routinely in his scoliosis surgery. Doesn't look like the major benefit is so much faster healing as it is protection against rejection - as one's own stem cells are immune protective. If I'm reading right. He states that in using this method he has yet to see a case where the fusion did not become solid.

Looks like the harvested stem cells are further processed with bone bank to better ensure a solid fusion.

So if a solid fusion can be better ensured with this method, patients who might have experienced fusion problems - are covered (so to speak) and would heal faster than if the method were not used.

But healing wouldn't necessarily be faster for those who would not have had a problem with fusion in the first place.

Is that how you read it?