A resident of Texas Alan Spencer, suffering from a rare disease that causes muscle atrophy, was able to receive medical care in Russia, at the Perm clinic "Lymphatic".
According to the American, thanks to Russian doctors, he is not confined to a wheelchair now, although this is exactly the prospect that doctors in the United States promised him.
In December 2015, Spencer, who complained of persistent muscle weakness, was diagnosed with Inclusion body myositis (IBM) or myositis with inclusions.
It is a rare inflammatory skeletal muscle disorder.
At an early stage, the disease is expressed in the fact that it becomes more difficult for the patient to move, he begins to fall more often (due to the fact that the quadriceps muscle of the thigh begins to atrophy).
As early as five years after the onset of the disease, patients require a walker, and ten years later, a wheelchair.
“Myositis with included bodies is an autoimmune disease.
Your immune system "goes crazy" and begins to attack and destroy your own muscles, seeing them as enemies.
The task of doctors is to reboot the immune system, tell her: "Stop," Spencer explained earlier in an interview with RT correspondent Maria Finoshina.
Myositis with inclusions is poorly understood, and doctors still consider it incurable.
Nevertheless, his stay in the Perm clinic led to a significant improvement in Spencer's condition and, as he himself believes, gave him hope for a normal life.
"In just the first three days (body research. -
) we learned amazing things, such that no doctor in the United States paid attention to ... For the first time in many years, I really had a hope that I would get better," says Alan.
"It became a little easier for me to speak"
In his homeland, the Texan turned to the Mayo Clinic for help, which has the status of one of the largest private medical and research centers in the world.
But there Spencer was told that it was pointless to fight his illness.
“They said to me:“ We cannot do anything about it.
Medicine is powerless.
There is no cure or cure.
We can help you learn to live with your physical problems, but we cannot eliminate them, ”Alan said in an interview with RT.
Due to muscle atrophy, the American lost the ability to button up buttons, tie shoelaces, pick up things from the floor, climb stairs and stand on his feet.
Spencer also had difficulty swallowing (dysphagia) and keeping his eyes open.
The development of the disease did not allow Alan to work.
Due to muscle atrophy in 2017, he was forced to leave his post as vice president of the Time Warner Cable division in West Texas.
Alan Spencer arrives for treatment in the Russian Federation
© Clinic Lymphatek
Spencer learned about the existence of the Perm clinic, where foreigners are often treated, in February 2020 from his friend Andy.
He told the man that local doctors were able to help his father, sister and brother cope with various ailments.
At first, Alan was skeptical about the idea of seeking help from a provincial Russian clinic.
But, having decided that he would not lose anything anyway, the American took part in the webinar, which was conducted by "Lymphatic".
The clinic said they were ready to help Spencer.
“Andy said to me, 'Listen, there will be a webinar about this clinic, where I think they could help you.
Are you interested in this?
I thought, "Not really," but I didn't tell him.
He only said: “Yes?
Well, okay, come on. "
If Maio says that nothing can be done, then probably nothing can be done, ”Spencer told the story of his acquaintance with the Perm clinic.
After the webinar, Alan talked to the doctors of the clinic and decided to trust them.
However, the coronavirus pandemic intervened in his plans - the restrictions imposed did not allow him to come to Perm.
According to Spencer, RT correspondent contacted Andy in May and asked "how your medical tourism is doing there."
Alan's friend replied that due to the pandemic, Russia could not be reached.
Then employees of the Russian Foreign Ministry contacted the Americans and helped to solve the problems that arose.
In total, it took the Texan seven months to get to Russia.
“The doctors were able, let's say, to achieve remission of my myositis, as they do in the case of oncological diseases.
I do not know the nuances of how this is done, but in fact they strengthen your immune system, and because of this, the disease actually falls asleep, "Alan said.
Alan Spencer in the ward of the Perm clinic
© Clinic Lymphatek
In addition, Perm doctors have found that myositis is not the only cause of the American's problems.
They also diagnosed a partial blockage of the carotid arteries.
This limited blood flow to the brain, which in turn did not send enough signals to the muscles.
Doctors prescribed Alan a course of injections and droppers, similar to those used for cancer and other serious diseases.
Also, Russian specialists were able to "unclog" the patient's lymphatic system, as well as arteries.
“First of all, I noticed the changes with swallowing, and the face began to" tighten ".
I was able to swallow better, it became somewhat easier for me to speak.
The treatment has begun to show results!
Almost immediately ... I can eat normal food and not choke on it, ”Alan said.
penetrate into the essence of things"
However, as Spencer notes, further recovery will be slow.
In the next six months, Alan is expected to have regular blood tests.
If the Texan needs more help, he is ready to return to the clinic.
Nevertheless, Spencer does not hide his delight at the effect of being in the Perm clinic.
He explains the work that the Russian doctors have done by the ability of Russians to "penetrate with thought into the essence of things."
Before treatment in "Lymphatic", the American had been to Russia several times.
For example, Alan visited Perm five times as a missionary to the Baptist Church.
Upon returning to the United States, the Texan promised RT that he would recommend the services of local doctors to those around him.
“I really hope to bring a
group of such people
here (to Perm -
, if only the problems with the coronavirus are left behind.
If we can get air travel, I plan to work with Andy and others so that people from America can come here.
And you don't have to make a secret out of it, ”says Spencer.
In an interview with RT, the president of the League for the Protection of Doctors, candidate of medical sciences, Semyon Galperin noted that Russian medicine "in many areas corresponds to the world level" and is capable of providing qualified assistance to citizens from different states.
A similar point of view is shared by a specialist in medical rehabilitation, head of the national center for social support and rehabilitation "Doverie", candidate of medical sciences Alexander Komarov.
He stressed that the availability of qualified medical care in Russia is higher than in the United States, and is approximately at the level of the EU countries.
“If we talk in general about the process of organizing medical care, the Russian system is better than the American one.
Because in the United States, it is symptomatic and “reversible,” and in the Russian Federation, clinical examination and dynamic observation play an important role, which is not found in either European or American medicine, "summed up Komarov.