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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A must read and where can we get it?

Doctors may be on the cusp of developing a new treatment for multiple sclerosis. It isn't a complex new drug, but rather something that already exists within the human body.

37-year-old Melissa Sherak-Glasser has had multiple sclerosis since she was a teenager.

"My body has experienced a lot of different things from numbness to not being able to feel temperature, to not being able to use my legs, to seeing double," Sherak-Glasser said.

Remarkably, during each of her four pregnancies, her symptoms diminished.

"I knew there was something about being pregnant that made me feel really, really great," she said.

But what was it that made her feel better?

Researchers at UCLA think it was estriol, a hormone produced by the placenta.

They believe that just like it protects a fetus from attacks by a mother's immune system, it protects a MS patient's nervous system from attack.

"We gave a dose of estriol to induce a pregnancy level in the patient's blood and by doing that we had recreated some of the particular effects of pregnancy," said Dr. Rhonda Voskuhl, UCLA.

In a pilot study, non-pregnant women with MS who took an estriol pill had 80 percent fewer brain lesions - the telltale sign of the disease.

The problem is that it's not available in the United States yet -only Europe. Doctors are conducting a larger study to change that.

"Our goal is to acquire data, based on efficacy in MS and safety. To go to the FDA, and say- what else do you need? What can we do to try and get FDA approval to bring estriol to the United States?" said Dr. Voskuhl.

Most MS drugs are injected and can cost up to $20,000 a year.

Estriol is a pill, and much cheaper, with an estimated cost of $70 per year.

Trials on the hormone are still recruiting patients, and the University of Pennsylvania is one of the study sites.

(Copyright ©2010 WPVI-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)


pammi said...

Angioplasty Side effects
Angioplasty has provided to be boon for heart patient. They found ray of hope after coming this technology into existence. This has been one of the best technologies used. Stent, is used in this technology. There are also few side effects for this. But in spite of angioplasty side affects this s still very good for heart patient.

pammi said...


In today’s modern world, changing lifestyles are leading to increase in the number of diseases related to the heart. With that, many techniques of surgery for the heart have come up. Of all the available options for surgery, Angioplasty has proved to be one of the safest ways.

Angioplasty was first used in the late 70’s. It involves the widening of an obstructed blood artery, which has happened because of atherosclerosis, by mechanical means. A balloon catheter, which is an empty one and is collapsed, is taken and it is passed through the location where the surgery is to be done. Then the catheter is inflated by pressure which is around 200 times compared to that of the blood pressure.

The inflated balloon has sufficient pressure in it to crush most of the fatty deposits on the sides of the artery walls. Thus, the artery opens up properly and the flow becomes proper and the obstruction is now minimal. After this is done, the catheter is collapsed and made empty and is finally withdrawn.

Angioplasty is of several types based on the location of the arteries which have been blocked. Some of these are Renal, Cerebral, Coronary, etc.

Once Angioplasty is done, the patient is kept under observation for a day or two. The blood pressure is monitored continuously along with the heart beat rate. Proper medications are given if necessary.

Since the time from which it has been put to use, Angioplasty has helped lot of patients and has saved their life. The best outcome of it is the prevention of heart attacks and bypass surgeries.