Assistive Technology Blog

Child’s Own Umbilical Cord Blood May Ease Cerebral Palsy Symptoms

For parents with children with Cerebral Palsy, there is some exciting news. A recent study done by Dr. Joanne Kurtzberg, an internationally renowned stem cell pioneer, used a child’s own umbilical cord blood banked at birth for infusion that showed big improvements in their motor skills over a period of time.

In a trial involving 63 children, 32 of them were given an infusion of 10 million stem cells per kilogram to 50 million per kilogram, and a year later, it was found that 25 million cells per kilogram of body weight showed tremendous improvements in motor function, compared to the ones who got lower doses or placebo. Improvements were seen in the ability to complete movements like crawling and rolling. Dr. Kurtzberg also mentioned that children who saw improvement in function also had repair or development of new motor tracks in the area of deficit.

Patrick Rooney, one of the kids who got the infusion from his banked umbilical cord blood, saw remarkable improvement in his movement. Before the infusion, Patrick dragged his left leg, and kept tripping. Now he plays sports with his younger brother, and walks and runs normally.

This first demonstration of this study shows that motor function improvements can be made in children with CP. The researchers are not calling this a cure, however, for families like the Rooneys, any treatment that brings improvements in their children’s lives is life changing.

Watch the video below to learn more about Patrick, and how this treatment improved his movement and stamina drastically.

Sources: CBS New York, Fierce Biotech

Image Source: Medical News Today