From Paralyzed to Walking Again: The Miracle of Stem Cell Therapy in Spinal Cord Injuries

Stem cell transplant enables paralyzed individual to walk again

Chris Baer, a paraplegic man who was unable to walk or move his limbs, was invited to participate in an experimental procedure that involved transplanting stem cells into his spine. Stem cells are unique cells with the potential to develop into any cell in the body and were injected into Chris’s lumbar spine to replenish damaged areas.

Five years later, Chris’s doctors reported a remarkable transformation: he had become an independent individual who could walk and move his limbs. The Mayo Clinic trial involved ten paraplegics, and Chris was the first participant. The results of the experiment showed that seven out of the ten patients experienced muscle movement in previously paralyzed areas and could even sense light touches. While three patients did not respond to the stem cell therapy, their condition did not worsen either.

Dr. Lior Unger, deputy director of the neurosurgery department at Sheba Tel Hashomer Medical Center, described the treatment as a significant breakthrough in medicine. He emphasized the potential of stem cells to repair damaged nerve cells in the spinal cord, showcasing their future potential as a versatile healing tool in the medical field. However, more research is needed to determine the long-term effects of this treatment on patients’ health outcomes.

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