Health Insider Update


Stem Cell Treatment To End Heart Disease

Stem Cell Treatment To End Heart Disease
September 20
13:27 2015

By the 1930’s, the average life expectancy in America had risen to about 60, and heart disease had become the number one cause of death. Prior to the advances that led to longer lives, pneumonia was the leading cause of death.  Smoking, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure all contribute to the building of plaque within the heart’s blood vessels. When there’s a complete blockage – a heart attack – the heart weakens and large portions of the heart muscle dies and overall failure occurs.

Occurrences of the disease increases strikingly with age. A longer life means more time for arterial plaques to develop and cause problems. For instance, the risk of an 85-year-old man having a heart attack is 25 times that of a 45-year-old.

Currently, there are very few treatments available to repair heart muscles. Dangerous, often costly, surgeries are most commonly used, and a whole heart transplant occurs in the worst cases. Due to the numerous complications involved for both of these options, the medical community has sought to find new strategies to treat heart disease.

According to many medical experts, stem cells have the potential to end this problem. Stem cells, because they are unspecialized and can multiply and turn into specialized cells, have offered hope in treating numerous health issues.

Stem cells could be useful in tissue engineering therapies, the building of tissues within an lab that could replace damaged muscle. One clinical trial has shown stem cell injections into a patient’s heart can decrease scar size and promote heart regeneration. The finding could change the way heart disease is treated – and greatly extend patient’s lives.

While stem cell research gives patients and their families hope, cures won’t happen overnight. Given the incredible potential offered by stem cell research, continued support for researchers will be vital in finding cures for many life affecting, life ending ailments.





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Sean Gibbons

Sean Gibbons

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