Even though stem cell research has been around for almost 40 years now, it wasn’t until 2011 that the first stem cell therapy, Hemacord, was approved by the FDA. This means that it hasn’t even been ten years since FDA approved stem cell treatments have been available to the public and as such there is still a lot of misinformation about these treatments. Rising out of this ambiguity are a lot of unproven and untested treatments that are being performed by clinics throughout the United States. Some of these clinics believe that they are offering viable solutions for a plethora of ailments while others are simply attempting to cash in on the lucrative medical procedures involving stem cells.
It is incredibly important that you arm yourself with the facts before making a decision to get any stem cell treatment, FDA approved or not, as failure to do so could not only result in an unnecessary loss of money but could cause complications that you do not want to deal with. The list below is by no means a comprehensive research document on stem cells or on the particular treatment that you are interested in, but if you are thinking about undergoing stem cell therapy then the following ten things are a good starting part for your research.
1. Only a few stem cell treatments are proven safe and effective by the FDA
For starters, and we’ve addressed this in another article on this site, there are only a few stem cell therapies that have been proven by the FDA to be safe and effective. The only treatments so far that are FDA approved involve bone marrow or cord blood and they are used to treat certain types of cancer.
2. It can be very dangerous to get unproven stem cell treatments
While it would be easy to fall into a frame of mind, especially if you or a loved one is very sick, that the FDA is simply dragging their feet on approving treatments and many treatments out there are totally safe, this is just not the case. It is totally understandable that you would feel this way, but it is important to remember that stem cell treatment can be dangerous and that they are not as innocuous as you may think.
3. Not all Stem Cells are the same and they used for different purposes
Many people would be surprised to know that there are different types of stem cells, as a majority of the population have only heard of embryonic stem cells. With that said different stem cells are used for different treatments and it is important to understand the difference.
4. Only a few stem cell therapies are covered by insurances
If you are going to get a stem cell treatment that has not been FDA approved, then you are going to have to pay out of pocket for it. However, if you are getting a treatment that has been FDA approved then it is possible that your insurance provider will cover it for you.
5. Stem cell therapies can be exceedingly expensive
If your stem cell therapy is not covered by an insurance company, then you can expect to pay around $700 for a treatment of platelets and around $5000 for a treatment of fat or bone marrow.
6. The science and research for the treatment should make sense in regard to illness
When you are speaking to a doctor about the stem cell treatment you are about to get you should research and make sure that the science behind what they are saying makes sense. It can be very difficult to follow the medical jargon being thrown at you sometimes, but be sure to get a few opinions and also research before you get anything done.
7. Just because a cell is from your body doesn’t mean you can’t experience complications
One of the ways that many experimental treatments get around needing FDA approval is because of the fact that the cells are removed from the individual and then put back into that same individual. In theory, this should represent no issue but once the cells leave your body there is the potential that they could become contaminated and if they are not injected back into the proper part of your body it could cause complications.
8. Often times advertisements and marketing materials about treatments can be deceptive
Given how highly technical stem cell therapies can be it is easy to be misled on what treatment are actually effective and which doctors are reputable. This can also be difficult to figure out because doctors cannot give you former patients to talk to and so you are left to sort of figure it out on your own. What you should do is talk to as many professionals in stem cell research as you can before agreeing to do anything and find out how viable the treatment you are getting actually is.
9. Clinical trials and experimental trials are not always the same thing
If you have to pay from the treatment that you are about to undergo then understand that it is not part of a clinical trial, which in regards to clinical or experimental trials is what you should be looking for if you are going to get an unproven treatment. Clinical trials involve a tremendous amount of oversight and have controls in place in order to actually gauge the effectiveness of the treatment, whereas experimental trials usually do not.
10. It will take a long time before many new stem cell therapies are proven effective
Although we would all like cures for terrible illnesses to be found and proven immediately, these things take a lot of time. There is a tremendous amount of testing that needs to be done in order to prove that the treatment is safe for humans and we all need to be patient with stem cell treatment and let the medical community move at the pace that they need to move at.
Need More Information on Stem Cell Funding and Research?
Stem cell therapy is an emergent treatment that can provide people with lasting relief from illness and disease. Continued funding of stem cell research ensures that scientists can continue to work towards further breakthroughs. If you are looking to better educate yourself on the benefits of stem cell therapy then call Stem Cell Authority toll-free today. Our experienced team of professionals can provide the resources you need to become better informed in regards to stem cell therapy, so contact us today.