Stem cells injected directly into heart muscle can help patients suffering from severe heart failure by improving an ailing heart’s ability to pump blood, a new Danish trial indicates.
Doctors drew stem cells from patients’ own bone marrow, and then injected those cells into portions of the heart where scar tissue seemed to interfere with heart function, explained lead researcher Dr. Anders Bruun Mathiasen. He is a research fellow in the Cardiac Catheterization Lab at Rigshospitalet University Hospital Copenhagen.
Within six months of treatment, patients who received stem cell injections had improved heart pumping function compared to patients receiving a placebo, according to findings presented at the American Academy of Cardiology’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
“We know these stem cells can initiate the growth of new blood vessels and heart muscle tissue,” Mathiasen said. “That’s what we think has happened.”
Read the full, original story: Stem Cells May Rejuvenate Failing Hearts