Stem Cell Introduction
If you are a person who suffers from an incurable condition, you are gullible in the sense that you’re going to experimental treatments in the hopes of improving your condition.
Such is the case of John Rodolf, who had been suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), which is a condition that has Rodolf struggling to breathe for most of his waking hours. His doctors said that there are no treatments available for the condition and there are some medications that would help alleviate the symptoms. But, these medications still didn’t give him the relief that he needed.
So, he went online to find a clinic that offers stem cell therapies to treat any kind of condition. He said that it was appealing given that there were customer testimonials on the website that can attest to the effectiveness of such treatments and the website looks authoritative at first glance. After spending $6,000 for the stem cell treatments, it didn’t improve his condition at all. He has now conferred with his lawyer to file a lawsuit against the said institute, stating that it had defrauded him and countless others. The story of Rodolf and countless others like him is something that both scientists and federal regulators are worried about. Because of all of the hype of stem cells and its purported use in treatments and therapies, more and more people are desperate to get their hands on it and some doctors and institutions are capitalizing on their gullibility and lack of knowledge. You see, although stem cells can, theoretically, be used in a therapeutic sense, more evidence would need to be made in order to test its efficacy and safety. The only approved stem cell treatment today is a bone marrow transplant, so all other stem cell treatments today are considered highly experimental.
Stem Cell Treatments
The public is generally misinformed regarding stem cells and its use in therapy. Stem cells come in two types: embryonic and adult stem cells. The former’s use in research and therapy has been heavily regulated and, sometimes, ethically incorrect and the utilization of the latter is, well, rather limited in a scientific sense. Although adult stem cells can divide indefinitely- making plenty of copies of themselves- they do not have the ability to turn into any type of cell in the body. You see, adult stem cells are harvested directly from our own bodies and it only turns into cells based on where you got the cells from. So for instance, if you’ve gathered skin stem cells, they will only turn into skin stem cells and nothing else. The same goes for adipose (fat) cells and liver stem cells as well. There are various techniques that would help turn these adult stem cells into its previous pluripotent state, but that would require evidence that the resulting products are safe for grafting and for use in treatments. For now, it would be best that you gather enough information about stem cell therapies so that you will know if it is worth your time, money, and safety or not.