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The Lung Institute got a chance to tell its remarkable story to a national television audience in early November.

Lifetime TV’s “Access Health” featured Dr. James St. Louis, Lung Institute senior medical advisor, discussing the innovative stem cell therapy that has helped many people address the progression of their COPD and do more than just temporarily manage their symptoms.

 

The program also featured an inspiring look at COPD patient Larry Wood. Wood was an avid exerciser who found his breathing becoming more and more difficult after being diagnosed with COPD. He had to rest during his aerobic workouts, but shortly after undergoing stem cell therapy he could do all his exercises without stopping.

 

Watch this video to see Larry’s story and to learn more about the Lung Institute’s stem cell treatments. A transcript of the program is below.

 

Here is what you will learn:

  • COPD is the third leading cause of death in the United States.
  • 24 million Americans have COPD.
  • Symptom management can improve quality of life.
  • Progression of the disease is inevitable.
  • The Lung Institute’s stem cell therapy treats the disease not the symptoms.
  • Stem cells are the body’s natural healing cells.
  • Treatments are minimally invasive.
  • COPD patient Larry could resume his normal exercise routine shortly after treatment.

 

“Access Health” is a weekly program that tackles important health and wellness topics from the female perspective.

 

Program originally aired November 8, 2017

 

(Ereka Vetrini/Access Health host)

 

0:00 Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD ranks as the third leading cause of death in the United States trailing just behind heart disease and cancer.

 

For most COPD patients vigilant symptom management means better quality of life. However progression of the disease is inevitable.

 

For patients like Larry disease progression is the only sure thing about COPD, take a look.

 

(Larry)

 

0:25 Well, I first was diagnosed with COPD in 2004. I had already stopped running just about that time just simply because it was so difficult for me to catch my breath and continue on.

 

It seemed like every year I noticed a little bit of a change. Even over the last year or two I noticed a change from one year to the next a little less capacity to breathe.

 

It affected my lifestyle mostly because I was active with physical training and of classes for physical training for seniors and it was getting to the point where I couldn’t exert during those and even simple things like working around the yard.

 

I would get up I’d have to stop and catch my breath sometimes just go back down just to be able to breathe for a moment.

 

COPD is always progressive but then aging is as well, and if you can stop the COPD rapid progression then I would progress normally in lung function and that’s really what I was looking for, a way for me not to have to rely on extraordinary means to catch my breath and for me to feel better.

 

(Ereka)

 

1:23 Patients like Larry are not alone. In fact, COPD affects over 24 million Americans. Despite advances in medicine, the standard of care for COPD treatment has remained relatively unchanged over the past few decades leaving patients with few options.

 

What if there was a way to potentially slow the progression of the disease using the patient’s own stem cells? Well, joining me today to discuss the alternative to traditional treatment options for COPD is Dr. James St. Louis, from the Lung Institute. Doctor, thank you so much for joining us today.

 

(Dr. James St. Louis)

 

1:52 Thank you for having me Ereka.

 

(Ereka)

 

1:54 So let’s get right to it Doctor, what exactly is COPD and what are the current treatments?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

1:59 COPD is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema and the traditional treatments right now would be nebulizers, medication, and a variety of other treatments that treat the symptoms of the disease.

 

To actually treat the disease would be a lung transplant. At the Lung Institute, we treat the COPD in other lung diseases with stem cell therapy.

 

Stem cells are the body’s natural healing cells. They reduce the inflammation in your body. Inflammation causes many diseases in the body so you can use your own cells to decrease the inflammation.

 

(Ereka)

 

2:40 So the process of harvesting stem cell sounds incredibly complicated, what is that process like?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

2:46 It’s actually very simple you can take your blood and separate the stem cells out and the other way of doing it is using your bone marrow which is also a very simple procedure and then we separate out the stem cells and then put them back into your body using an IV.

 

(Ereka)

 

3:02 So how are you getting the stem cells to target the lung specifically?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

3:06 Stem cells after we harvest them and return them into your body when they circulate to the right side of your heart and then from the right side of heart they’re pushed into the lungs but the stem cells go into a part of the lung called a pulmonary trap and they stay in this pulmonary trap and then they are dispersed primarily to the lung.

 

(Ereka)

 

3:27 So then what are the risks and what are the results?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

3:30 The risks are very minimal if you just sit back and think about it because it’s your own cells.

 

(Ereka)

 

3:35 Right.

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

3:36 You’re not introducing anything foreign into your body so the risks are very minimal. The results show at about three months the patients have an increased quality of life.

 

One person had fairly severe disease and they were on oxygen 24 hours a day so now they’re on oxygen much less but they can do simple things, like go to the grocery store, do day-to-day activities versus how they were before.

 

(Ereka)

 

4:01 So what is the ultimate goal at the Lung Institute?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

4:03 Our goal from the technical part is to increase in some cases your lung function which goes hand-in-hand with increasing your quality of life.

 

(Ereka)

 

4:12 This sounds like a great option for so many people and we met Larry at the top of the show if you remember so let’s check in with him again to see how he’s doing.

 

(Larry)

 

4:20 In 2014 my condition was progressing of course to the point where I couldn’t participate in things as well as I wanted to and I did read an ad in the newspaper about Lung Institute.

 

I made the decision to proceed and the procedure was very simple, straightforward, and not uncomfortable at all.

 

They asked me to keep a journal and the results of that was that I saw that over a period of about three weeks I gradually had some improvement in lung function and ability to do my exercise programs.

 

After my last treatment I had really good results and before that I couldn’t breathe very well and had to let up and rest during my aerobic exercises but right after the treatment I found that I was able to do the whole exercise and I didn’t have any problem with breathing.

 

With the positive results I’ve had I really look forward to the future perhaps we can get more involved in stem cells, perhaps we can actually make better things happen and I’m really hopeful for the future particularly not from necessarily for myself but for others who may have problems similar to mine that there is may be a path to recovery.

 

(Ereka)

 

5:21 We are so happy to see that Larry is doing well now. Doctor, the Lung Institute uses stem cell therapy to treat other lung diseases as well?

 

(Dr. St. Louis)

 

5:31 That’s correct. We treat major pulmonary lung diseases which as I said before is COPD which is emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and then we also treat interstitial lung disease which one of those is pulmonary fibrosis. For those out there who are suffering from COPD or other lung disease they now know that there’s an alternative.

 

(Ereka)

 

5:49 Thank you Doctor so much for joining us! For more on the alternative treatment options discussed here today go to lung institute dot com and of course you can find all of these resources on our website as well access health dot TV.

 

Thank you so much, Doctor!

 

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* All treatments performed at Lung Institute utilize autologous stem cells, meaning those derived from a patient's own body. No fetal or embryonic stem cells are utilized in Lung Institute's procedures. Lung Institute aims to improve patients' quality of life and help them breathe easier through the use of autologous stem cell therapy.

All claims made regarding the efficacy of Lung Institute's treatments as they pertain to pulmonary conditions are based solely on anecdotal support collected by Lung Institute. Individual conditions, treatment and outcomes may vary and are not necessarily indicative of future results. Testimonial participation is voluntary. Lung Institute does not pay for or script patient testimonials.

Under current FDA guidelines and regulations 1271.10 and 1271.15, the Lung Institute complies with all necessary requirements for operation. Any individual who accesses Lung Institute's website for information is encouraged to speak with his or her primary physician for treatment suggestions and conclusive evidence. All information on this site should be used for educational and informational use only.