Michael Ortiz Hill Stem Cell
As many of you know, my dad, Michael (Miguel) Ortiz Hill, has been living with Multiple Sclerosis for the past 13 years. As a result he lost his career as a registered nurse, his mobility is impaired, and he has many other symptoms which make daily life difficult. In spite of all of this, he has continued to live a joyful life, and remained both hopeful that he will find an effective treatment, and at peace with living life with a disability.
Two years ago, he came to live in the Bay Area, so that he could be closer to me, his only child, and his grandson, Shylo who is now six. It has been a blessing to have him in our lives. My dad has always had a child-like imagination, which made my childhood magical, and I now get to see him enter into the world of imagination with Shylo; a world where Fuzzy Wuzzies poop pennies, and the Inanimates come to life. Shylo loves his "Yoyo" deeply.
Recently, my dad began to discuss with his neurologist, the possibility of using Stem Cells to treat his MS. He was referred to Silicon Valley Stem Cell Treatment Center in Cupertino, CA. http://www.svstemcell.com/
Dr. Chen at the treatment center believes my dad is a good fit for this treatment which could possibly reverse the damage done by the MS, reduce inflamation and regenerate healthy cells. The cost of the treatment is $9,800, and is not covered by insurance. The procedure uses Stem Cells harvested from my dad's own fat, which are then injected both into an IV and his spine. These cells can change into bone, cartilage, muscle, fat, collagen, neural tissue, blood vessels, and even some organs. Because it is his own DNA material, there is no rejection.
MS has no cure, and very few effective treatment options. It is important to my dad to know he tried everything to heal his body.
Because he lives on his Social Security Disability payment, and was not able to work for the last decade, the $9,800 treatment is out of reach.
Any financial contribution large or small would be greatly appreciated. As soon as we have the funds raised, we will schedule the procedure.
If you are unable to support my dad's cause financially, we would appreciate your messages of goodwill, prayers, healing rituals, flowers, cards, help with transportation, and love.
Thank you all so much for your contributions. With your help we were able to reach our goal.
This week my Dad received an infusion of a new MS medication called Ocrevus. It was recommended by his neurologist from UCSF Multiple Sclerosis Center, and has been shown in trials to slow the progression of the disease in people with progressive MS like my dad has. https://www.ocrevus.com
In January, Dr. Cree, a neurologist who specializes in MS, did a very thorough exam of my dad, and told us about this newly available, research-based treatment for us to consider. When asked about Stem Cells he said that while they hold promise, much more research is needed, and that they are not safe or proven to be effective at this time. He emphasized that with my dad’s condition Stem Cell treatment would put him at serious risk of death.
Because of this, Stem Cell treatment is no longer something that I am actively pursuing for my dad at this time. We will keep an eye on it and hope for a breakthrough in the technology that makes it safer.
My intention is to continue to explore safe and effective options for my dad’s treatment and care under the guidance of a neurologist who specializes in MS. I would like to use the funds that have been raised as needed for my dad’s treatment and care. If you are uncomfortable with this change in direction, please let me know and I will refund your donation.
Thank you for your support and your prayers. It means so much to my dad and I that so many people are holding him in their hearts.
My dad’s next infusion will be on Thursday, June 31 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. If you are inclined, please light a candle or say a prayer that this medicine will help him.
Thank you for your patience as we explore safe and effective options for stem cell treatment. I wanted to give you the latest updates.
On January 2, 2018 my dad has an appointment at the esteemed UCSF Multiple Sclerosis Center. Our hope is that by meeting with a doctor who specializes in MS, we will get some guidance on treatment options. Being a patient at the center is also the first step in being eligible to participate in UCSF‘s research and trials. I am very curious to see what this doctor thinks of stem cells for MS.
We are also eagerly anticipating the release of the San Francisco Chronicle article on stem cells that is featuring my dad. The photo journalist, Guy Wathen, has been out to visit and photograph my dad several times. The journalist, Erin Allday, has won many awards and is very well respected. We will let you know when the article comes out.
My dad is now living in a small room and board house in Concord. He has recently experienced “losing his legs” (as he calls it ), and is depending more on the wheelchair. My hope is that the decline in this mobility is related to the heat wave in the Bay Area, and is only temporary. I’ve already noticed some improvement in the past week now that it has cooled off.
If you would like to get in touch with my dad, feel free to private message me and I will send you his contact information.
I have an exciting update. My dad and I have been interviewed for the San Francisco Chronicle for an article about Stem Cell treatments. The health journalist, Erin Allday, is sharing the stories of several American families who are trying to navigate the world of Stem Cells in the current environment where they are not FDA approved, and not covered by insurance.
We spent a delightful 2 hours talking with her and the photographer/videographer about my dad's experience with MS, our relationship, and our exploration of Stem Cells.
It was an amazing afternoon.
I will let you know when the article is published. There will also be video of our interview on the SF Chronicle website.
I hope that this exposure will inspire strangers to contribute to our campaign, and share resources related to Stem Cell research and options.
In the meantime, my dad's condition has seemed stable (not improving, but not declining) in the over 2 years that he's lived near me in CA. He is happy and settled in Concord, Ca.
I'm sure he'd love to hear from you.
Thanks, Nicole, for this update. Hoping that the new doctor will be helpful in deciding whether and how to proceed with the stem cell procedure. I'll be arranging to visit with Michael in his new digs shortly. Love to you both.
Nicole, i pray that the stem cell treatment has beneficial outcome and please send me Michael’s contact info in Concord. Sending him love and to you and the family. Xo
Michael, i would love to see the interview.you are always in my heart xo
Miguel and Anne - Our Monday ACIM group has been concerned about you but the former place 'had no info on where you were'. We speak of you both often and really miss you. How can we get in touch with you? Sunee