Caroline hopes HSCT has halted MS – 12 months on, no new lesions

HSCT is a great treatment for multiple sclerosis but, to be fair, its beneficial effects are not felt by everyone who undergoes the therapy.

Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, to give HSCT its full title, is an intense procedure. It involves harvesting stem cells from each patient, doses of chemotherapy suppress the immune system, before the stem cells are given back. Their job is to aid the building of a rebooted immune system, hopefully free from MS.

Most people who have gone through HSCT report tremendous success and report significant improvements in their symptoms. Unfortunately, not everyone is so fortunate and don’t talk of experiencing any improvements.

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Caroline Wyatt, BBC News special correspondent until MS intervened (Pic: BBC News).

Former BBC tv news special correspondent Caroline Wyatt made her decision to travel to Mexico for treatment at Clinica Ruiz.

She flew to Mexico for HSCT therapy and returned to the UK 28 days later.

Now, Caroline has talked about her experiences, from her first symptoms in 2002, MS diagnosis in 2015, HSCT, and beyond.

Her full article is well worth reading and can be found here.

And, how is she now? Caroline writes:

Today, I quite often feel worse than I did before HSCT.

I still need to rest frequently during the day, and when I use my energy for work, I have none left for anything else at all.

But there are sunnier days when I feel a little better than I did immediately before the treatment, and then my hopes soar.

Of the other HSCT patients with whom I keep in touch via several vital support groups on Facebook, some have seen improvements and are overjoyed.

Play a full part

Once again, they can play a full part in family life, and work without exhaustion. Many train hard at the gym or at home, doing their best to regain limb function and balance that was lost over many years.

Others report little change.

And a few have said that they now feel worse than they ever did before HSCT, and wish they had never had the treatment.

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Caroline’s hair is regrowing. It fell out after chemotherapy (Pic: Caroline Wyatt).

Some have had fresh relapses since their transplant, and wonder whether to have HSCT again, or re-start MS drugs. It isn’t yet clear why there is such a wide variation in response.

Much about the long-term impact of HSCT on auto-immune diseases, from MS to systemic sclerosis or Crohn’s disease, is still unknown, and may remain unclear until the causes of these diseases are better understood.

Soberingly, over the past year, some patients at international centres have died while having HSCT, making clear that it is not a treatment to be entered into lightly, however effective it can be in halting progression for some.

Many patients have struggled after transplant with everything from migraines, headaches, swollen feet or agonising neuropathic pain in the hands and feet, to viruses or bacterial infections that affect the bladder.

They can also develop other common infections that resurface in the body when the immune system is fragile, such as the Epstein-Barr virus, herpes or shingles.

However, my latest MRI brain scan shows that so far, I have no new lesions on the brain.

It’s a sign, I hope, that I shall be among the lucky ones for whom the treatment does halt further MS progression for several years.

And that’s an outcome I am sure we can all wish for Caroline.

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Affiliate disclaimer: This affiliate disclosure details the affiliate relationships of MS, Health & Disability at 50shadesofsun.com with other companies and products. Read more.

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50shadesofsun.com is the personal website of Ian Franks, a freelance medical writer and editor for various health information sites. He enjoyed a successful career as a journalist, from reporter to editor in the print media. He gained a Journalist of the Year award in his native UK. Ian received a diagnosis of MS in 2002 and now lives in the south of Spain. He uses a wheelchair and advocates on mobility and accessibility issues.

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Note: Health-related information available on 50shadesofsun website is for your general knowledge only. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for specific medical conditions. I am not a doctor and cannot and do not give you medical advice. You should seek prompt medical care for any specific health issues. Also, consult a doctor before starting a new diet or exercise programme. Any opinions expressed are purely my own unless otherwise stated.

New clinic in Mexico to open to treat chronic diseases – but including a very different stem cell treatment

Dr Jose Romo

Dr Jose Romo

There is a second clinic being set up in Mexico that claims it is going to be offering various treatments, including stem cell therapy, at a fraction of the price of Clinic Ruiz.

It is important to realise, though, that the new clinic’s stem cell treatment is not HSCT.

Treatment at the new clinic will be led by Dr Jose Romo who has many years of experience as a physician and has, since his start in conventional medicine, made much progress in the field of holistic medicine specialising in the treatment of many chronic illnesses. Independent research shows that Dr Romo is, in fact, highly qualified and experienced in many areas of medicine.

Starting on March 24, he will be offering a 21-day programme which will include intravenous GcMAF, ozone therapy, stem cell treatment, Papini magnetic therapy among many other methods of treatment.

It shoud be noted that GcMAF, although widely used in the holistic field is controversial in that it does not have the approval of the USA´s FDA and has led to raids by the FDA as well as by UK health authorities.

Placements are limited and the clinic cannot guarantee places to everyone at the moment, however, as the facilities grow, it claims more placements will be able to be offered in the very near future. As every case is unique, all cases will be reviewed following a detailed questionnaire to determine eligibility for the programme that includes treatment and therapeutic measures, but also training and education.

Amanda Mary, holistic health adviser and cancer researcher at the new clinic, La Flor De La Salud (The Flower of Health), says: “Please send me an email if you would like further details. I will be handling all administrative matters as well as questionnaire submissions, so contacting me directly would not only expedite the process, but also ensure your consideration for the program. email mary@mothernatureandyou.com Destination Puebla, Mexico.”

The clinic’s website is http://www.flordelasalud.com/en

For Multiple sclerosis patients, La Flor De La Salud uses cbd oil from the cannabis plant, ozone, B12 intravenous, GcMaf, clean diet and Papimi. A 40% reduction in symptoms is the target. Stem cell treatment is available using donated cells and no chemotherapy drugs. Amanda Mary says: “Chemotherapy is mustard gas, it does not show enough good results with MS.”

Interesting, but I don’t think veterans of HCST would agree.

Requirements for acceptance do not include a history of having taken DMDs but you must not have undergone chemotherapy or radiation within three months and you must have some level of mobility.

The programme is scheduled to begin on March 24 2016. It includes a minimum 14-day stay, up to 21 days, at the facility at a price of €2700 (EUROS), $3000.00 (USD), £2100.00 (GBP). Accompanying guests only pay 40% of the programme fee to cover meals and accommodation. After eligibility requirements are met, 50% payment is required to secure your place.

Price Includes: A healthy meal plan for the duration of the programme; Daily consultations with Dr. Romo or holistic medical adviser, Amanda Mary; Accommodation in a private suite next door to the clinic; Supervising protocols, nursing staff and 24-hour care; and a full training course during your stay as well as full access to the upcoming Online Video Course at healingoracle.

Products for protocols will be billed accordingly and separately from above fee. Once your questionnaire is completed, the clinic will advise on protocols that will be offered and send prices of the products. Although there are charges for the products, administration of those products is included in the price of the programme.

Patricia hits Mexico while UK is on ‘storm alert’

Patricia_PLOTS

UPDATE: Hurricane Patricia has made landfall in Mexico’s Jalisco province in which major tourist destination Puerto Vallarta is situated. Hundreds of thousands of people are said to be in its path.

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Storms lie ahead. Nothing strange in that, it is just a difference in scale. As the British news media gets its figurative knickers in a twist (USA translation ‘panties in a bunch’) about the country being on storm alert, the people of Mexico are facing the threat of a hurricane said to be the strongest ever in either the eastern Pacific or the Atlantic.

Apparently, shock horror, Britain is bracing itself to be battered by torrential rain and gales that will accompany temperatures as low as -4C (25F). Well, that should give them something to talk about – after all the weather is one of the favourite subjects of their conversations. (And don’t bother even thinking about taking issue with me for making such a generalisation; remember, I am a Brit).

Wind speed alone puts these two events of nature into perspective as “This weekend will see 60mph winds while downpours will threaten flooding in parts of Britain.” That’s obviously serious headline news; well, let’s look a bit further westward. There we can see that Hurricane Patricia, has sustained wind speeds of up to 200mph. Now, that IS a storm.

Hurricane Patricia has been designated as a category 5, the worst possible. Its power is similar to that of Typhoon Haiyan, which left more than 7,300 dead or missing in the Philippines two years ago, according to the UN’s World Meteorological Organisation.

So, while the British ‘brace’ themselves for a supposedly wintry storm, those unfortunate enough to be living in the path of Hurricane Patricia have been warned by the US Hurricane Center to expect it to make a potentially catastrophic landfall.

Homes are being boarded up, doors are being sandbagged to try and prevent flooding and people are rushing to stores to buy non-perishable foods as emergency provisions. A State of Emergency has been declared in Colima, Jalisco and Nayarit. An estimated 50,000 people are being evacuated from the areas considered most at risk.

The Hurricane Center, which is based in Miami, has also said that preparations should be completed quickly, warning that Hurricane Patricia could cause coastal flooding, destructive waves and flash floods. A powerful storm surge is expected to make a severe impact, followed by heavy rain over the mountains with the rainwater draining back to the already flooded lowlands. “First it will get the saltwater flood and then, as that goes away, the freshwater flood will come,” said one US television weather forecaster.

It is expected to hit the Mexican coast, somewhere around Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo areas during Friday afternoon or evening, local time, which means late evening or very early hours of the morning for readers in Britain or mainland Europe.

Talking of Britain, although the storm expected there is so minor in the scale of things, one thing can easily be predicted; no matter how accurate the warnings and predictions, neither the authorities nor the people will be prepared.