Kristine Emerson

Kristine Emerson

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I have never met an app I couldn’t figure out. But that’s perhaps due to the fact that I grew up with one of the first generations of at-home computers, and had to learn to type for school, and then by the time I was a senior, everyone my age had their own cell phone and iPod and laptop.

Technology in my pocket. I cannot say the same about my parents, though they have caught on quickly to the incredible tide of innovation - nor my grandparents, though in their defense, they were seniors before that tide came in. They do what they can, but it rarely is enough to stay abreast of all the changing trends.

Enter the Senior Resources Mobile App. Thanks to the Office on Aging resource, seniors, caregivers, family members, senior care professionals, health care providers and more can download the first true made-for-seniors app on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices. Complete with a directory of services for seniors and their families living in Orange County, the app features information on adult day care, caregiver support + resources, disability services and products, donations, volunteerism, and more.

“Allowing users to search through the directory in a mobile format, the app opens up a world of assisted independence for individuals seeking a day-to-day resource in the palm of their hand,” notes Lisa Bartlett, OC Supervisor. Easy to navigate, the app dials in each item in the directory with a continuously updated map system. The call center database and website are updated at the same time as the mobile app, which means you get new information in real time.

Additional features allow individuals to seek hotline numbers, behavioral health services, and veteran benefits. Resources can be emailed, shared, copied, or added to favorites. All you have to do is type in the phrase “OC Senior Resources” in your app store, and there it is. The tide is turning: more seniors than ever are online, surfing the web, living in the nebulous ether that is the cloud. With this app, Orange County seniors can ride the wave of accessibility all the way into shore.

App Categories Include ...

Adult Day Care
Caregiver Support & Resources
Disability Services & Products
Donations & Volunteerism
Employment & Education
End of Life & Bereavement
Financial Assistance
Health & Behavioral Services
Hotline Numbers
Housing Options & Resources
In-Home Services
Legal Services
Nutrition and Food
Recreation & Community/Senior Centers
Safety, Abuse & Prevention
State & Local Agencies
Supportive Services & Care Coordination
Veteran Services

For information, call (800) 510-2020 or visit

Stem cells treat heart disease and stroke – and change the way we age

The “Usual” Treatments for chronic diseases treat symptoms with drugs that have side effects, are costly and typically don’t fix anything!

For this reason, regenerative medicine has seized the spotlight thanks to its focus on helping repair, and even regenerate, body parts and tissues damaged by disease, injury or aging using stem cell therapy and innovative treatments such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

One of the trailblazers in regenerative medicine and especially stem cell therapy is physician David Steenblock. Since 2000, Dr. Steenblock has treated over 7,000 patients with stem cells and also coauthored a groundbreaking book on the subject titled “Umbilical Cord Stem Cell Therapy” (2006, Basic Health) which details impressive clinical responses in children and adults who’d been treated using pure umbilical cord blood-derived stem cells in Mexico.

Regenerative medicine can be explained as simply as ‘out with the bad, in with the good.

As you might expect, Dr. Steenblock’s education, life and career journey uniquely prepared him to become a distinguished expert in doing personalized regenerative medicine. Having grown up on a farm in Iowa where his natural talent for finding or creating innovative solutions was encouraged because it saved time and money, Dr. Steenblock decided early that this plus his desire to help others pointed to a single best career path: science and medicine.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is used to treat a variety of conditions such as cerebral palsy, stroke, traumatic brain injury, post-plastic surgery patients, non-healing wounds, neuro degenerative diseases and more! Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is used to treat a variety of conditions such as cerebral palsy, stroke, traumatic brain injury, post-plastic surgery patients, non-healing wounds, neuro degenerative diseases and more! Dr. Steenblock’s subsequent trek into medicine included earning a B.S. degree from Iowa State University, then an M.S. in biochemistry and Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) degree from the College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery (Des Moines, Iowa). His post-doctoral training included three years at Case Western Reserve University, one year at the Oregon Health & Sciences University and a clinical Rotating Internship at Providence Hospital in Seattle, Washington. In addition, he did an externship at the University of Washington Department of Hematology/Oncology in 1969 which included work with stem cell-rich bone marrow. This program was run by Dr. Edward Donnall Thomas (who in 1990 was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine & Physiology).

He then put in a number of years studying and working in the field of pathology before launching out into the world of holistic medicine (Better known now as “complementary-alternative medicine” or “integrative medicine”). In 1979 he founded the first holistic medical clinic west of the Mississippi and began making inroads into the treatment of chronic diseases, including working out methods for reversing blood vessel blockage and heart disease that was decades ahead of what other doctors were doing.

Then, in 1989, Dr Steenblock began working with hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) as a means of flooding his patients bodies with oxygen in ways that rev up natural healing mechanisms. It was a year or so later that a patient who’d had a stroke came to him asking if there was something he could do to reverse his brain damage, as the best conventional medicine had to offer had done very little for him. Steenblock prescribed a course of HBOT treatments which brought about swift improvements.

By the mid 1990s Dr. Steenblock’s success in turning around chronic stroke had earned him the appellation “The Stroke Doctor”.

Says Dr. Steenblock, “HBOT uses stem cells and growth factors to make new blood vessels to the stroke brain area. HBOT was a great step forward in our quest to help stroke patients but it was a daily program for two months that was hard to do for most. However, now the same or better results can be achieved through the use of just stem cells. Once you give the stem cells, they go directly to the damaged areas where they become lodged in the small blood vessels that were injured because of the stroke. They enter the damaged tissues, proliferate there and secrete growth factors that cause new blood vessels to grow into the injured areas.”

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) proved to be so successful that Dr. Steenblock developed a clinic around that particular therapy

As the blood flow resumes, the patient begins to improve. This process takes from three weeks to three months to complete, during which time the patient needs to follow certain lifestyle guidelines. Today, Dr. Steenblock recommends stem cells as the best treatment there is for the alleviation of suffering and regaining the functions that were lost due to a stroke or heart attack (and many other conditions, injuries and even aging).

In his practice, Dr. Steenblock uses both therapies together because “hyperbaric oxygen allows for an increased invasiveness of the stem cells into the tissue and helps activate the stem cells and also helps mobilize the stem cells from the bone marrow into the circulation and into damaged tissues.”

When stroke patient Bob Ziachkowsky came to Dr. Steenblock, he was in “such bad shape that he couldn’t walk and “could hardly move.”

Having completed a painless, safe course of bone marrow stem cell and hyperbaric oxygen therapies, Bob credits “The Stroke Doctor” with the tremendous improvement in his motor function and cognitive ability – a fact that his wife Melanie says is evidenced by the fact that Bob can now complete an entire word search book in one sitting.

In addition to the use of stem cells and hyperbaric oxygen to “regenerate the body from the inside out,” Dr. Steenblock also uses customized IVs and chelation, External Counter Pulsation (ECP), extracorporeal shock wave therapy, lasers, pulsed electromagnetic therapy and many other “safe, non-toxic” therapies. These gently stimulate the body’s natural healing and restoration mechanisms for stroke, cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s and dementia, ALS, arthritis and antiaging.

External Counter Pulsation Machine (EECP) is used to help treat heart conditions and much more. External Counter Pulsation Machine (EECP) is used to help treat heart conditions and much more. According to the American Heart Association, nearly 800,000 Americans suffer a stroke each year, with two-thirds surviving and requiring some type of rehabilitation, while heart attacks strike over one million people in the U.S. annually. The widely accepted “standard of care” treatments are not meant to “cure” the effects of stroke or heart attack because they cannot substantially reverse the damage. Rather, its goal is to help a survivor become as independent as possible—unfortunately often with only partial success.

Although Dr. Steenblock’s practice encompasses therapies for many degenerative disorders and diseases, we asked that he address frequently asked questions about regenerative medicine as it specifically pertains to the treatment of stroke and cardiovascular disease.

Question: What is regenerative medicine?

Dr. Steenblock: Regenerative medicine focuses on assisting or augmenting the body’s own ability to heal by utilizing powerful, leading edge medical therapies that enable the body to repair, replace, restore and regenerate damaged or malfunctioning cells and tissues to help people return to better health. Instead of managing symptoms with prescription drugs, devices and invasive medical procedures, all physicians will someday use regenerative cell therapies to replace dam-aged tissue and restore function of a failing organ caused by disease, injury, congenital defects, aging or other circumstances.

Question: How are stem cells and HBOT used to aid in recovery for patients who have suffered a stroke (or suffer from other neurological conditions like Traumatic Brain Injuries and Cerebral Palsy)?

Dr. Steenblock: Very simply, bone marrow is taken from the hip bone and given back to the patient intravenously. HBOT is then done daily for a few days. In patients with a stroke, heart attack, cerebral palsy or a traumatic brain injury, injured tissues are ‘dormant’ and non-functioning, but still alive. Stem cells and/or HBOT rescues these ‘sleeping’ tissues and return them to more normal function. In children, cognitive function and spasticity are improved in 70% to 80% of cases. Paralysis may improve or even disappear; children have gained their eyesight for the first time while people blind from their stroke have been known to regain their eyesight. Over 90% of stroke victims will have at least some degree of improvement in their problem areas if treated even many years after their stroke.

Question: What is stem cell therapy and how does it work?

Dr. Steenblock: Healing begins naturally in the body when healthy stem cells – which are responsible for growing new tissues - are made. With regard to cardiovascular disease, for example, transplanting healthy stem cells into the heart, can help restore or regenerate unhealthy cells and repair damaged tissue so that the heart can start functioning better.

Stem cells generally come from umbilical cord blood, adult blood, fat or adult bone marrow. In the bone marrow, billions of new blood cells are made every day from blood-forming stem cells.

Bone marrow is taken, usually from the pelvis bone (iliac crest), using a needle and syringes. Patients often ask how painful the procedure is and while every individual has a different pain threshold, 50% of patients need only a local anesthetic and others may also need a small amount of valium intravenously.

Question: What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)?

Dr. Steenblock: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy alleviates oxygen deficiencies, reduces brain swelling, repairs damaged cell membranes, stimulates the growth of neural stem cells (important for neural re-growth), neutralizes toxins, enhances immune defenses, renews ‘sleeping’ or ‘dormant’ neurons and stimulates the growth of new blood vessels into damaged tissues.

The HOCATT™ is a multi-disciplinary health apparatus that incorporates eight effective treatment modalities that can potentially be utilized in a single session to promote health and vitality.The HOCATT™ is a multi-disciplinary health apparatus that incorporates eight effective treatment modalities that can potentially be utilized in a single session to promote health and vitality.During an HBOT session, the patient lies or sits in a special pressurize chamber and breathes in 100 percent pure oxygen. Hyperbaric oxygen increases the concentration of oxygen in the blood TEN TIMES NORMAL. This high concentration of blood oxygen forces oxygen into the wounds and areas of tissue damage, reduces swelling and builds new blood vessels.

Have a question? Call (949) 367-8870 or visit
Dr. Steenblock’s practice is located at 187 Avenida La Pata in San Clemente, CA. 92673.