Treating Fatigue with Stem Cells



Fatigue is the symptom which has been high on the agenda for research into its cause and cure.

It seems this is a sickness behaviour as a consequence of inflammation within the CNS.

It is probable that it is caused, at least in part, by inflammatory cytokines. Therefore, if you get rid of inflammation, fatigue may be reduced.

We first saw this with natalizumab and so it is the cases haematopoetic stem cell therapy and so.

Bose G, Atkins HL, Bowman M, Freedman MS. Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation improves fatigue in multiple sclerosis. Mult Scler. 2018. doi: 10.1177/1352458518802544. [Epub ahead of print] BACKGROUND: Fatigue is a common problem in multiple sclerosis (MS) affecting as many as 90% of patients. The Fatigue Impact Scale (FIS) is a validated measure of fatigue in MS patients. The cause of fatigue in MS is likely multifactorial, with some evidence that ongoing central nervous system (CNS) inflammation is a contributing factor. Immunoablation and autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (aHSCT) have been shown to halt ongoing CNS inflammation.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether halting all ongoing inflammation with aHSCT impacts FIS scores in patients with severe MS.
METHODS: In the Canadian aHSCT study ( , NCT01099930), 23 patients underwent aHSCT and had FIS prospectively collected every 6 months for 36 months of follow-up. Change in FIS was analysed by repeated-measures analysis of variance (RMANOVA) with multiple linear regression to determine independent predictors.
RESULTS: The median FIS score decreased 36%, from 36 to 23 ( p = 0.001), and four patients had 100% reduction. Improvement in FIS correlated with lower age and Expanded Disability Status Scale at baseline, as well as increased independence as evidenced by a return to gainful employment and even driving.
CONCLUSION: Patients had significantly less fatigue on average after aHSCT. This may serve to better understand the contribution of ongoing CNS inflammation to fatigue peculiar to MS.

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  • Perhaps fatigue could be the canary in the mine, so to speak, to establish whether a protocol is having an impact. Of course, the placebo impact cannot be discounted here. For many, faced with a degenerative disease with no cure, the burden of prognosis lends itself to depression and depression is known to cause fatigue. Having an intervention like stem cell treatment might lead some to see a glimmer of hope, and this translates into less depression and less fatigue.

    I had always thought that the Idebenone trial in PPMS might have been positive – it was administering a mitochondrial stimulant that crosses the BBB. But it failed. Dr Terry Wahls, who preaches the mitochondrial basis of MS and argues you should boost your cell energy using plant-based diet might be onto something, but she hasn't (as far as I can see) addressed why Idebenone failed.

    Fatigue – cognitive and physical – disable. Perhaps our fatigue levels should be monitored more carefully? After all, we live in the age of fitness watches and movement monitors. Perhaps equipping patients with these and looking at their pre and post movement levels following treatment might offer an insight into real-life effects that are not always recorded?

  • Autoimmune disease symptoms

    The early symptoms of many autoimmune diseases are very similar, such as:

    achy muscles
    swelling and redness
    low-grade fever
    trouble concentrating
    numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
    hair loss
    skin rashes

    Early Signs of Rheumatoid Arthritis


    Morning stiffness


    Early signs of Lupus

    Weight loss
    General aches and pain
    hair loss



    Other symptoms of CIDP include fatigue, burning, pain, clumsiness,

    Sjogren's syndrome

    Joint pain, swelling and stiffness
    Swollen salivary glands — particularly the set located behind your jaw and in front of your ears
    Skin rashes or dry skin
    Vaginal dryness
    Persistent dry cough
    Prolonged fatigue


    Crohn's disease

    Abdominal pain and cramping
    Blood in your stool
    Mouth sores
    Reduced appetite and weight lost
    Weight loss
    General aches and pain

    Fatigue is the hallmark off many Autoimmune disease not only Ms


  • "Perhaps fatigue could be the canary in the mine, so to speak, to establish whether a protocol is having an impact."

    "A few days after starting Combivir, she noticed dramatic improvement in fatigue. After two months, she had gradual improvement in numbness and pain in her arms and legs."

    I don't think MS fatigue is mitochondria related though… In contrast, the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is possibly a mitochondria related disease and not an autoimmune.

    PS MD your title is a little confusing, HSCT and stem cells, we need to separate the too more carefully…

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