Treated at Okyanos May, 2016
As the number one killer in the western world, heart disease hardly needs any introduction. Fred’s story, however, centers around a lesser-known form of heart disease known as non-ischemic cardiomyopathy which can present some of the same symptoms as ischemic heart disease—characterized by ischemia, restricted blood flow—however he had never suffered a heart attack or been diagnosed with coronary artery disease. Here Fred shares a glance at his heart health journey and family history, and how stem cell therapy for cardiomyopathy has impacted daily life.
Heavy Breathing, Easily Fatigued
“I learned about Okyanos from my wife and daughter who had researched stem cell therapy for my son, Aaron, who had advanced congestive heart failure [CHF]. He had an ejection fraction [EF] of 11-19% and he was told he needed a heart transplant by his cardiologist. He was only 38 years old at the time. In late 2014 he had injections of his own stem cells directly in his heart at Okyanos. It took about a year and we were amazed to learn his heart function had returned to a normal range and he was back to working out in the gym. He is still this way now nearly two years later. He was a medical miracle in my eyes.
“After seeing his benefit, when I got my diagnosis of advanced CHF in early 2016 I knew to turn to Okyanos to see if I was a candidate as well.
“I am 66 years old with non-ischemic cardiomyopathy. In other words, I don’t have coronary artery disease and have not had a heart attack. In 2004 I went for a stress test. I wasn’t noticing any symptoms but my father died prematurely at 63 and my brother at 42, both from CHF. My results were ‘abnormal’ but I wasn’t informed. In 2014, I went for an echo. It showed a low EF 27% but incredibly I wasn’t informed again. In March, 2016 I went for another echo and for the first time I was informed that my EF was 33%. I was placed on treatment then with metoprolol (I was already on Lisinopril for my blood pressure).
“I had heavy breathing when I exerted myself and was easily fatigued. I was pre-diabetic with high blood pressure and it would take me 40 minutes to walk a 1.5 miles on a treadmill—which was exhausting.
“I decided to go to Okyanos and it has been 7 months since my treatment there. This past week I went on a 10 mile bike ride with my wife. She could barely keep up with me. When we finished the ride I wasn’t even tired. Recently, I even helped my wife cut a tree down with a chainsaw.
“My overall energy has returned. I was pre-diabetic with my HA1C above 6 before Okyanos and now it is improved to 5.2. I have discontinued metformin on my doctor’s advice.
“I was very impressed with the nurses. The facility was perfect.”
Cardiomyopathy Treatment Using Your Own Stem Cells
Where patients no longer find conventional cardiomyopathy treatments to be effective, stem cell therapy presents a viable option for care. To learn more about whether you may be a candidate for stem cell therapy for cardiomyopathy, please request a private consultation with our medical team.