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Anatol J Cardiol. 2019 Mar;21(3):155-162. doi: 10.14744/AnatolJCardiol.2018.12354.

Long-term follow-up of patients with Buerger's disease after autologous stem cell therapy.

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Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Ankara University; Ankara-Turkey.



We investigated the long-term results of autologous bone marrow mononuclear cells (ABMMNCs) implantation in patients with Buerger's disease (BD).


Twenty-eight patients (25 males and 3 females) who had BD and critical unilateral limb ischemia were investigated between April 2003 and August 2005. The patients were administered multiple injections of CD34+ and CD45+ positive ABMMNCs into the gastrocnemius muscle, the intermetatarsal region, and the dorsum of the foot (n=26) or forearm (n=2) and saline injection into the contralateral limb.


The mean follow-up time was 139.6±10.5 months. No complication related to stem cell therapy was observed during the follow-up. The ankle-brachial pressure index evaluated at 6 months and 120 months was compared to the baseline scores (p<0.001 and p=0.021, respectively). Digital subtraction angiography (DSA) was performed for all patients at baseline, 6 months, and 120 months. The angiographic improvement was 78.5% and 57.1% at 6 and 120 months, respectively. Patients demonstrated a significant improvement in the quality of life parameters at 6 months compared to baseline (p=0.008) and 120 months compared to the baseline (p=0.009). The 10-year amputation-free rate was 96% (95% CI=0.71-1) in ABMMNC-implanted limbs and 93% (95% CI=0.33-0.94) in saline-injected limbs (p=1).


Autologous stem cell therapy could be an alternative therapeutic method for BD at long-term follow-up.

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