The ABC has an amazing story on staff at Canberra Hospital using stem cell treatment to completely reset the immune system of one Ben Leahy to effectively cure him of multiple sclerosis.
The procedure is akin to rebooting the patient’s immune system. The first step was to extract some of Ben’s stem cells from his bone marrow.
“Following some chemotherapy and administration of marrow stimulating drugs, the patient’s own bone marrow stem cells are harvested from the bloodstream on a machine during a narrow window of time,” Dr Pidcock explained.
Ben’s extracted stem cells were stored in Canberra Hospital’s liquid nitrogen tank, waiting for his body to be ready to receive them back.
For this to happen, Ben was subjected to a second dose of chemotherapy to knock out his immune system and remaining bone marrow cells.
Within weeks of the treatment, Ben was out of intensive care and walking – something he had not been able to do for more than nine months.