In another instance that has proved the advancement in science as a blessing for the mankind, a paralysed Bulgarian man was able to walk again on his feet after undergoing a pioneering cell transplant treatment.
Darek Fidyka was a happy man as the medical advancements helped him to walk on his feet again. After 19 months of successful treatment, Fidyka was able to recover some voluntary movements, muscle controls and sensations in his legs, according to his medics.
The doctors used the cells from the patient’s nose as a part of the technique for transplanting the olfactory ensheathing cells into his spinal cord. This surgical procedure allowed to doctors to reconstruct a “nerve bridge” between the two stumps of the spinal column that got damaged during the attack.
Study leader Geoffrey Raisman, a professor at University College London’s (UCL) institute of neurology, said, “We believe this procedure is the breakthrough which, as it is further developed, will result in a historic change in the currently hopeless outlook for people disabled by spinal cord injury.”
38-year-old Fidyka suffered paralysis from the chest down after he received stab wounds to his back during a knife attack in 2010.
Fidyka is continuously showing signs of improvement and that too at a fast rate as he is now able to drive and lead his life more independently, UK-based Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation, a charity that part-funded the study, said in a released statement.
Raisman, who is a specialist in UCL spinal injury, along with other expert surgeons at Poland’s Wroclaw University Hospital conducted the surgery on Fidyka. The medical team first removed one of his olfactory bulbs, responsible for sense of smell, and transplanted his olfactory nerve fibroblasts (ONFs) and olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) into the damaged area in his spinal cord. They then created a nerve bridge between the two stumps of the damage spinal column.
Meanwhile, the medial experts are seeing the new cell transplant treatment as new ray of hope for the paralysed patients or those with spinal injuries.
The major breakthrough was detailed in the journal Cell Transplantation.
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