Urinary incontinence affects up to half of all older women, with an unpleasant disease is involuntary urination when coughing, laughing, and other minor stresses. Minimally invasive treatments are often ineffective and, for example, collagen injections help for a short period of time. Number of surgical operations for this disease has grown considerably in recent years - both in the U.S. in 1979, holds 3.2 of operations per 10 000 women, and in 1997 - more than 6 (New England Journal of Medicine).

Recently proposed a new solution to the problem of stress urinary incontinence - tissue engineering using autologous stem cell patients.

Specialists from the Medical University of Innsbruck (Austria) was isolated from blood and muscle tissue of patients two cell types: fibroblasts (the main connective tissue cells) and myoblasts (muscle stem cells). They were grown in culture for 6-7 weeks, and then under ultrasound fibroblasts were injected into the urethra (the urethra), and myoblasts - in the sphincter (closing muscle) of the bladder.

In clinical trials, was attended by 184 people with stress urinary incontinence - some of them before the treatment had to use up to 24 pads a day. A year after the introduction of cells in 80% of patients the disease was cured, the treatment effect is not weakened with time.

Clinical trials funded by Innovacell Biotechnologie, which owns the patent for this method of treatment.

Good results of injections of stem cells obtained by another group of scientists - from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. Tests were conducted on eight patients who were injected in the sphincter of autologous muscle stem cells. Observed long-term (more than a year) a significant improvement in five patients, and fully cured one.

The basis for these tests have good results of earlier experiments on animal models of urinary incontinence. In these experiments, it was shown that by injecting stem cell regeneration occurs weakened sphincter muscles.

Planned to conduct a large-scale multicenter clinical trials of this method in Canada and the U.S., which will be chosen at the optimal number of input cells.

Proceedings of these studies are presented in the reports on the passing now the annual convention of the American Urological Association (American Urological Association).

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