http://www.granma.cu/ingles/2009/febrero/juev26/ciren.html

      Havana.  February 26, 2009
     

     
      More than 40,000 patients from 85 countries seen at CIREN

      Iris de Armas Padrino

      THE International Neurological Restoration Center (CIREN), founded on 
February 26, 1989, has attended more than 40,000 patients from 85 countries, 
including Cuba. 

      In an exclusive interview with AIN, Emilio Villa Acosta, deputy executive 
director of the center, emphasized that the majority of patients seen, both as 
outpatients and for admissions, are Cuban. 

      For two decades, this specialized scientific and medical institution has 
garnered tremendous international prestige on account of its scientific rigor, 
the talents of its specialists and the quality of its personnel. 

      It boasts a program of neurological restoration, the only one of its kind 
in the world, thanks to its human and technical resources and the intensity of 
the treatments available to patients, confirmed Dr. Villa Acosta. 

      He explained that after conducting medical and laboratory research, the 
staff designs a personalized program for each patient in order to obtain 
results in multifaceted neurorehabilitation over a 28-day cycle. 

      In conjunction with other institutions, CIREN is working on a protocol - 
now in the clinical investigation stage - for neural transplants using stem 
cells, which would modify them and transform them into neurons that can produce 
dopamine or any other desired substance for treating diverse neurological 
conditions, including strokes. 

      Villa Acosta cited some of the institution's achievements, such as the 
introduction and perfection of minimal access surgery on the nervous system to 
improve the chances of recovery for chronic disabling conditions. 

      Together with the Immunology Trials Center, CIREN created a system known 
as ESTEREOFLEX (the most high-precision stereotactic surgery in the world), 
which has been put into practice in various hospitals throughout the country 
and extended to Chile and Spain. 

      This method has been employed since the 1990s and allows surgeons to 
access tumors, vascular conditions and other symptoms related to movement 
disorders, with minimum invasion to the brain. This method has greater benefits 
and carries fewer risks. 
     

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