Stem cell procedure has potential to help NFL players who’ve suffered multiple concussions

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Former Indianapolis Colt Barry Kraus is just one of thousands of current and former NFL players who live wondering about the hidden effects of their career on their body.

When Kraus talked to the CBS4 in 2014, he had joined a lawsuit suing the NFL over the league’s handling of what many call a concussion crisis.

"I think we all have concerns that we've done some serious damage," said Krauss.

But now, Doctors Mark Foglietti and Michael Kellis are giving new hope to current and former NFL players and other athletes. They’re doing clinical trials on a new experimental stem cell procedure.

Their treatment would help patients living with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or CTE, a progressive degenerative disease found in those who have had severe or repeated blows to the head.

[clip 1076 dr foglietti 17.52.29]

“A light bulb went off in regards to trying to treat CTE,” said Dr. Foglietti.

The doctors at the Ohio Stem Cell Treatment Center in Cleveland are using their patient’s fat to heal their own body. They say the fat is loaded with a specific type of stem cell that has regenerative properties.

“The results have been dramatic. It’s important to note these stem cells are what we call pluripotent, they become where we put them,” said Dr. Kellis.

“What we’re trying to do is improve and repair the central nervous system,” said Dr. Foglietti.

To learn more about the first former NFL player to try this new treatment, click here.

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