Stem cell treatment boosts heart attack patients

Giving heart attack patients injections of their own bone marrow stem cells significantly helped their recovery, according to new research at Emory University.

Participants in the research received the standard of care that occurs after a heart attack, which is stent placement, and began the study only if their heart pumping capacity was less than 48 percent after four days of evaluation. The average heart pumping capacity upon the start of the study was 34 percent  which is a sign of severe injury to the heart. Once the study began, patients had cells extracted from their bone marrow and received an injection of their sorted bone marrow cells or a placebo, with different doses from ranging from 10 million cells to 40 million cells.

Results were assessed six months after treatment, and major adverse cardiac events (MACE) were reported 12 months after treatment. About 17 percent of control patients who received less than 14 million cells reported a cardiac event, while only 10 percent who received greater than 14 million cells and 7percent who received more than 20 million cells suffered a cardiac event.

It is also worth noting that patients who received stem cell treatment had delays in getting stents, which puts them at a disadvantage in terms of heart recovery.

This data suggests more research should be done to determine how effective this stem cell treatment can be in helping heart attack patients recover.

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Sourced from: ScienceDaily, In landmark study of cell therapy for heart attack, more cells make a difference