Just before his 21st birthday, Kristopher (Kris) Boesen of Bakersfield, Calif., suffered a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the neck down. The prognosis was grim, but Kris qualified for a clinical trial that was accepting patients with his fact pattern. A verbal acknowledgment was necessary to enter the program at the University of Southern California (USC), but he was still connected to a ventilator. While the normal time to wean off of assisted breathing apparatus is generally three weeks, Kris was able to say yes in just five days with the help of his respiratory care team.
Kris was injected with 10 million AST-OPC1 cells directly into his cervical spinal cord. In two weeks, he began to show some positive signs that the procedure was working. Three months later, he was able to feed himself, make phone calls and perform tasks that previously would have been impossible. After so much pain and despair, he now has renewed hope for the future.
Stem cell research and therapy is just one of many promising medical breakthrough possibilities. Here are several others you may wish to check out if you haven’t heard of them yet:
- Precision guided cancer treatments: Scientists create “guided chemotherapy missiles” that target cancer cells and avoid healthy ones.
- Ghost heart transplants: Animal hearts are soaked in a chemical bath that destroys all cells but the proteins. This ghost heart is then injected with the patient's own stem cells.
- Bio-material joint replacements: 3D-printed joints, made of the same minerals as human bone, interlock with the patient’s cells to create a longer-lasting replacement.
- Ultrasound therapy for wound care: These small, wearable devices that could heal chronic wounds with low-frequency ultrasounds.
Pay It Forward?
Future lump sum payments are a great way to set money aside in settlements to be prepared for what the future may hold. Settlement plans often incorporate these payments to replenish cash resources, for specific needs like modified vehicles or future reinvestment. For people like Kris, who don’t have the opportunity to participate in clinical studies, future lump sums make sense to provide the resources necessary to explore opportunities and possibilities not yet even imagined ...
For some, realizing a future begins after the closure of a settlement. For others, the settlement process itself heralds a new beginning. Having a Ringler settlement advisor produce sample structured settlement proposals for you to discuss at the negotiating table may help you help them shift their focus away from a difficult past to a more hopeful future.