In this medical video learn how doctors are repairing hearts with patient's own stem cells.
Read the full transcript »
Jennifer Matthews: Cooking is one of Bill Spence's many hobbies. Lately, it's the only one he can still do. Bill Spence: The pain starts in the chest, radiates through the back and up over the shoulder and down the arm. Jennifer Matthews: At 52, Spence has had two heart attacks, open heart surgery, a pacemaker, and several stents put in his heart. He takes more than 25 drugs a day, but the pain doesn't go away ... And neither does his frustration. Bill Spence: I don't like having to sit on the couch, not being able to do things. Jennifer Matthews: A new study on stem cells may be Bills last hope. He is one of 33 people to receive the therapy. First, patients are injected with a drug that helps the body release stem cells. A special machine isolates the cells from their own blood. Doctors use this mapping system to inject the stem cells back into weak areas of the heart. The idea is to grow new blood vessels. Dr. Gary Schaer: I see the potential for helping many people that otherwise would not benefit from any conventional therapy. Jennifer Matthews: In the pilot trial, more than 60 percent of the patients reported less chest pain. Bill is hoping for a miracle. Bill Spence: I fantasize about it is that stem cells are going to grow me a new heart. Jennifer Matthews: And so does his wife -- who's been there every step of the way. Bill Spence: She has been my rock, and I don't know what I would have done without her. Jennifer Matthews: Now they are both looking forward to a happier and healthier future. This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.
Copyright © 2005 - 2015 Healthline Networks, Inc. All rights reserved for Healthline.