Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘National Institutes of Health’

June 1, 2012

Seven-year-old Dawa Titung grew up in Nepal with a head the size of a basketball, about 10 inches larger than the average head size for children his age. He couldn’t hold his head up, and strangers would often stare at him.

His mother, Phool Titung, said her son’s head was so heavy that she needed help lifting him from his bed or carrying him.

“His head was very big. It was very hard to take care of Dawa,” Titung said, speaking through an interpreter.

Dawa was born with hydrocephalus, a condition in which too much fluid fills the space between the brain and the skull. The still-forming skulls of children with the condition will expand around the fluid, causing the head to grow too large.

About one in 500 children are born with hydrocephalus, according to the National Institutes of Health, and doctors can often treat the condition early in life by shunting the excessive fluid to other parts of the body.

But in Nepal, Dawa and his parents had limited access to medical care. About six months ago, a doctor on a missionary visit to their region told them that help was available from doctors in the U.S.

Dawa’s parents brought him to Johns Hopkins Children’s Center in Baltimore. Dr. Amir Dorafshar, the plastic surgeon who performed Dawa’s operation, said he had never seen a child’s head as large as Dawa’s.

“His mother was unable to do all the things that a mother should be able to do,” Dorafshar said. “Our goal was to help his family care for him more easily.”

Doctors planned an operation to make Dawa’s head smaller. But the surgery to take apart the skull is risky. Beneath the skull are very large blood vessels that feed blood to the brain. Any mistaken slice during surgery can cut those vessels, causing the patient to lose a lot of blood. Dorafshar said he told the Titungs that Dawa had up to a 50 percent chance of dying during the surgery.

To lower that risk, Dorafshar and his colleagues used computer modeling and brain imaging to plan just where the surgeons would cut the bones of Dawa’s skull and design how they could be resized and pieced back together.

“We were able to practice the surgery at our desks before we ever got to the operating room,” Dorafshar said.

On May 9, doctors put their plan into action.

Neurosurgeon Dr. Edward Ahn used Dorafshar’s cutting guides to remove Dawa’s skull from just above his eyebrows all the way to the base of his neck.

“We did a lot of homework beforehand, so we were very confident in making openings and cuts inside the skull,” Ahn said.

Dorafshar then turned to his blueprints for Dawa’s skull. He trimmed “huge amounts of bone” from the skull, resized the remaining pieces and used plates and screws to jigsaw it back together to fit over Dawa’s brain. The delicate operation took about 12 hours.

Dr. Reid C. Thompson, chairman of neurosurgery at Vanderbilt University, said using computer modeling is an innovative approach to treating advanced hydrocephalus cases like Dawa’s, who would likely have experienced serious developmental problems or even death without the surgery.

Thompson said computer modeling technologies will likely become a larger part of modern surgery as doctors and engineers collaborate to try to make different types of operations faster and safer for patients.

“It’s kind of changing the way we think about what we do as surgeons,” Thompson said. “Computer modeling really is the way of the future.”

After two weeks in the hospital, Dawa was released and is recovering very well. He suffers developmental delays from his condition and his head is still larger than most children’s, but his mother said caring for him will be much easier now.

“Now it’s very easy to lift him, carry him from one place to another. I can do that by myself,” Titung said. “I am very thankful.”

from:  http://abcnews.go.com/Health/rare-surgery-shrinks-boys-extremely-large-head/story?id=16470581#.T8kYeNVSTNk

————————————————————————————-

using the number/letter grid:

 
1      2      3       4       5       6      7      8      9
A      B     C       D       E       F      G      H      I
J      K      L      M      N       O      P      Q      R
S      T      U      V      W      X      Y      Z

Where:

A = 1              J = 1              S = 1

B = 2              K = 2             T = 2

C = 3              L = 3             U = 3

D = 4              M = 4            V = 4

E = 5              N = 5            W = 5

F = 6              O = 6             X = 6

G = 7              P = 7             Y = 7

H = 8              Q = 8             Z = 8

I = 9               R = 9

 

 

Dawa Titung

4                7

 

how he obtains his heart’s desire = DG = 47 = Internationally known.  Having a bright future.

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

undefined

comprehensive summary and list of predictions for 2012:

http://predictionsyear2012.com/

—————————————————————–

—————————————————————–

——————————————————————

discover some of your own numerology for FREE at:

http://numerologybasics.com/

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

learn numerology from numerologist to the world, Ed Peterson:

https://www.createspace.com/3411561

undefined

Read Full Post »

10:54 AM EDT           Saturday May 19, 2012

Cash Burnaman, a 6-year-old South Carolina boy, has traveled with his parents to India seeking treatment for a rare genetic condition that has left him developmentally disabled. You might think this was a hopeful mission until you learn that an overwhelming number of medical experts insist the treatment will have zero effect.

Cash is mute. He walks with the aid of braces. To battle his incurable condition, which is so rare it doesn’t have a name, Cash has had to take an artificial growth hormone for most of his life.

His divorced parents, Josh Burnaman and Stephanie Krolick, are so driven by their hope and desperation to help Cash they’ve journeyed to the other side of the globe and paid tens of thousands of dollars to have Cash undergo experimental injections of human embryonic stem cells.

The family is among a growing number of Americans seeking the treatment in India — some at a clinic in the heart of New Delhi called NuTech Mediworld run by Dr. Geeta Shroff, a retired obstetrician and self-taught embryonic stem cell practitioner.

Shroff first treated Cash — who presents symptoms similar to Down Syndrome — in 2010. “I am helping improve their quality of life,” Shroff told CNN.

After five weeks of treatment, Cash and his parents returned home to the U.S.

That’s when Cash began walking with the aid of braces for the first time.

His parents were thrilled. Before the treatments, Cash could only get around by hopping, his mother said. The results were enough to persuade Cash’s mother to go back to Shroff for more help.

“We saw evidence the first time that it’s worth trying again,” Krolick said. “In this particular case, with Cash’s other conditions, we don’t have many other options.”

Cash is comforted by his father, Josh Burnaman, while nurses treat the boy during therapy at NuTech Mediworld in 2010.
Cash is comforted by his father, Josh Burnaman, while nurses treat the boy during therapy at NuTech Mediworld in 2010.

For four or five weeks of treatment, Shroff says she has charged her 87 American patients an average of $25,000. It’s a big financial hit for Burnaman, a volunteer firefighter and property manager, and Krolick, who attends technical college in Greenville, South Carolina.

But the boy’s family and friends went into fundraising mode, creating a blog called ChangeForCash.com, and amassing about $50,000 over a year.

Are patients like Cash truly receiving treatments that improve their quality of life? Or is therapy giving patients false hope?

Doctors say all that work and hope and money Cash’s supporters have funneled into his experimental therapy likely will have no medical benefits.

There are several types of stem cells. Adult stem cells can be found in mature cells and some organs.  For example, bone marrow cells are a type of adult stem cell that have been used in transplants for more than 40 years.  But because adult stem cells are taken from parts of the body that already have a purpose, they may be limited as to what they can be turned into.

Embryonic stem cells are the controversial ones because they’re harvested from leftover IVF embryos, which are then destroyed in the process. 

Embryonic stem cells come from 4-or 5-day-old fertilized eggs and have the ability to turn into any type of cell in the body.

Since human embryonic stem cells were first discovered in 1998, researchers have been trying to take these unique cells and coax them into becoming cells for every part of the body, which then could be used to repair damage or regenerate tissue.

For many years a virtual ban on funding this type of research slowed the field down.

It’s risky medical therapy. But I knew that we were going to have to do it.
Stephanie Krolick, Cash Burnaman’s mother

Researchers have developed another source of stem cells: skin cells.  Scientists learned to turn the clock back on skin cells so they’re like embryos — with stem cells that have the same “blank slate” properties like embryonic stem cells — but without the controversy.  These cells are called “IPS” (induced pluripotent stem) cells — and are not yet being used in human experiments.

There are no approved embryonic stem cell treatments in the United States. However, the Food and Drug Administration has approved two experimental clinical trials in humans using treatments made from human embryonic stem cells. One of these — to repair spinal cord injuries — was stopped due to the high cost of this type of research; the other trial — to restore vision in people with macular degeneration — is still underway.

There is hope that embryonic stem cells might someday lead to treatments for Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, traumatic spinal cord injury, Duchenne muscular dystrophy and other conditions, according to the National Institutes of Health. Someday.

Nevertheless, Shroff isn’t waiting for further research. She’s injecting patients with embryonic stem cells now.

“There is zero evidence for what she is doing being effective,” said Rutgers University’s Dr. Wise Young, a leading U.S. neuroscientist.

“It’s concerning no matter how you look at it,” said CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta. “Frankly it’s the complete wrong way of going about this sort of science.”

Inside her clinic, surrounded by patients, Shroff disagreed.

“Success,” she said, “is defined differently by various groups of people within that therapy mode. So as of right now, almost everyone — greater than 90% — have had success.”

But Cash’s family has its doubters, too. The boy’s father said he still isn’t totally convinced the treatment works.

“If we had taken away the stem cells and hadn’t done it, is this where he would be naturally?” Burnaman said. “And that’s where I keep coming back to is — I’m not sure.”

“It’s risky medical therapy,” acknowledged Krolick, who feared it would worsen Cash’s condition. “But I knew that we were going to have to do it. We did pick this clinic for a reason. I mean, we did look around, and we decided this is the place where we felt safe. She had a good track record.”

An energetic doctor who trained in India, Shroff says she acquired embryonic stem cells with the patient’s permission after she performed an in-vitro fertilization procedure on a woman more than a decade ago.

She would not allow CNN access to the facility where she says the embryonic cells are kept and harvested.

Nurses and assistants at NuTech Mediworld routinely inject patients with embryonic stem cells daily simply by sticking the needle into a patient’s back.

The routine at the clinic starkly contrasts with procedures CNN observed at a sanctioned embryonic stem cell trial at Atlanta’s Emory University, where technicians and surgeons took hours to conduct a safe injection.

Burnaman questions whether Cash\'s progress is tied to the therapy. \" where=
Burnaman questions whether Cash’s progress is tied to the therapy. “Where I keep coming back to is — I’m not sure.”

NuTech Mediworld’s treatment also includes physical therapy. The patient and a guest receive room and board. The rooms are cramped with bathroom facilities available down a long hallway.

Shroff has treated patients suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Others had spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, genetic and muscular skeletal disorders.

Pure embryonic stem cells are not meant to be put directly into the body, since they have to the potential to turn into any cell. That’s why credible researchers first chemically “coax” these stem cells into heading down the path of what they should turn into — for example nerve cells or heart cells — before injecting them into very specific parts of the body to achieve the desired results.

The doctor offered examples of her successes including a man from Baghdad who she said was a paraplegic because of multiple gunshot wounds and an Indian toddler who she said has a genetic disorder similar to Cash’s.

Kohl Guffey, an 18-year-old from Illinois who was paralyzed three years ago in a motocross accident, cites himself as another example of success at the clinic.

“Before I came here, I didn’t have any movement in my left hand between my fingers,” said Guffey. “Now I can retract them really good.”

Shroff conceded that when she attempted to present her findings to an internationally sanctioned stem cell conference, her medical abstract paperwork was rejected. But she continues to defend her work. “I believe that my patients are getting better,” she said. “I have proved it time and time and time again.”

She was present at a recent meeting of the Indian Council of Medical Research where prominent Indian physicians criticized embryonic stem cell clinics that have appeared in New Delhi and elsewhere throughout the sprawling country.

A leading Indian neurosurgeon, Dr. P.N. Tandon, agreed there was zero medical evidence of the effectiveness of embryonic stem cell therapy like that provided at NuTech Mediworld. There is no stem cell treatment proven in India that will make patients like these better, Tandon said, and none “proven anywhere in the world.”

Patients also have traveled for similar therapy in Central America, Mexico and China, although that country has recently clamped down on stem cell clinics.

For Young, the money charged for the therapy stands out as an ethical issue. “It’s all about $25,000,” he said. The cost of the treatment is “calculated to take a family to the brink of what they can afford, and they take everything.”

“Who doesn’t want to get rich?” Shroff asked. “Who doesn’t work for money? But you also have to work from the heart. You also have to see what you’re doing. Is it ethically right? And I believe I am doing everything right.”

from:  http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/19/health/embryonic-stem-cell-therapy/index.html?npt=NP1

——————————————————————-

using the number/letter grid:

 
1      2      3       4       5       6      7      8      9
A      B     C       D       E       F      G      H      I
J      K      L      M      N       O      P      Q      R
S      T      U      V      W      X      Y      Z

Where:

A = 1              J = 1              S = 1

B = 2              K = 2             T = 2

C = 3              L = 3             U = 3

D = 4              M = 4            V = 4

E = 5              N = 5            W = 5

F = 6              O = 6             X = 6

G = 7              P = 7             Y = 7

H = 8              Q = 8             Z = 8

I = 9               R = 9

 

 

Cash Burnaman

3118 23951415             43

 

his path of destiny = 43 = Family and friends went into fundraising mode, creating a blog called ChangeForCash.com, and amassing about $50,000 over a year.

Three of Cups Tarot card 

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

undefined

comprehensive summary and list of predictions for 2012:

http://predictionsyear2012.com/

—————————————————————–

—————————————————————–

——————————————————————

discover some of your own numerology for FREE at:

http://numerologybasics.com/

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————–

learn numerology from numerologist to the world, Ed Peterson:

https://www.createspace.com/3411561

undefined

Read Full Post »