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Stem Cells for Pulmonary Fibrosis? Jack was the Skeptic of Skeptics

Skepticism regarding stem cell therapy for his lung condition; but RSCI thrives on these discussions with bright patients who have done their homework. Read his report at “Day 16” after stem cells, in Jack’s own words.

“Many thanks, my good doctors, for the care and attention that you provided to me recently in San Salvador. My experience was a very good one and I'm glad to have had the benefit of your treatment. While I'm not keeping a daily log or recording statistics, I plan on making periodic notes regarding my progress. My very first one (see below) is a very good one. I hope my improvement continues. I will be having another PFT toward the end of October and it will be interesting to compare it to the one that I had in June.

With that, I hope you will be interested in my first report, included below. Thank you once again for everything, my good doctors!
- Jack

09 Aug 2009 was Day16 Treatment was on 24 Jul 2009
Beginning on 01 Aug and continuing since, I have limited my use of oxygen to sleep and periods of exertion. SpO₂ has consistently remained above 90. For the first week, it averaged about 94, and for the past few days has averaged about 95, with common readings as high as 97. By way of comparison, prior to treatment I eliminated oxygen use only when my SpO₂ was higher than 90 with no shortness-of-breath (SOB) problems. This was probably about only half of my time at-rest. SpO₂ then averaged 92, and if it ever decreased to 90 or below, I restored oxygen. Last night, I slept quite comfortably without oxygen, with no negative effects. While no detailed records were kept, all this seems to be a significant improvement. (I thought the doctor said to expect improvement in about a month, but I'm now wondering if he actually said "within" a month, as this improvement came as something of a surprise to me.)** I should note that I did not consciously change my oxygen usage beginning on 01 AUG. I have customarily removed my cannula while comfortably at rest with no SOB, and if my SpO is above 90. It was only in retrospect that I noticed this new pattern.

I go to pulmonary rehabilitation three times a week. My normal drill consists of four different exercises which usually take  about 110 min. to complete. Prior to treatment, my custom was to use an oxygen flow rate of 2L/m for very light activity (e.g., normal walking) and 3L/m for exercise. My latest session was on Fri., 07 AUG. I did my customary 30 min. on the treadmill (this is my hardest exercise, so I usually do it first) and then proceeded to the UBE (arm crank) drill. About 10 mins. into that I glanced at my oxygen tank and noticed that I had never turned it up to 3L/m. I was stunned that I had done my treadmill drill at 2L/m and actually felt good all the way through it (I'm usually a bit fatigued and SOB after 30 mins.). This is just one incident, but I think it's a noteworthy one. In addition, I was always exhausted after rehab prior to treatment, and ordinarily took a nap afterward. This past week, I have actually felt good afterward and have had ample energy left over. This is a novel experience for me. In fact, on Wed., 05 AUG, a few hours after therapy, I decided to eat out (that's somewhat uncommon for me) and I didn't even take my oxygen tank inside. For the first time in ages, I felt almost like a normal person. At this point, I am extremely pleased with my treatment and my progress.

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