At present, research is being conducted into the effectiveness of stem cells for different medical conditions. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has yet to approve this treatment method for any illness, but they are supporting its research. Because the treatment is not yet approved, the vast majority of insurance companies also do not cover the therapy for their patients. As a result, if you are interested in this type of treatment, it is at both your own risk and your own cost. However, it is important to know that all official treatment is now done under full supervision of an IRB (Investigational Review Board). Further details are available from http://www.innovationsstemcellcenter.com.
IRBs are in place to make sure that any investigation is completely appropriately and safely and that all results are properly documented. This is why patients who want to opt for stem cell treatment are recommended to only work with clinics that have IRB oversight. In so doing, they will have at least some guarantee of quality standards and they will know that their results will positively influence patients of the future.
IRB Approved Protocols
Because there has been such an interest in stem cell treatment, a number of protocols are now already approved by IRBs. These include:
- Soft tissue injuries, post traumatic arthritis, osteoarthritis and other types of orthopedic problems.
- Scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis and other types of connective tissue or auto-immune disorders.
- Strokes, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and other types of neurological disorders.
- COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and other types of lung problems.
- Auto-immune hepatitis, Crohn’s disease and other gastrointestinal illnesses.
- CHF (Cognitive Heart Failure) and other types of cardiac diseases.
- Erectile dysfunction, interstitial cystitis and other forms or urinary diseases.
- Diabetic retinopathy, retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration and other types of eye disease.
- Lichen sclerosis, hair loss and other types of dermatologic conditions.
Generally speaking, these protocols can be taken as categories, which means illnesses that are not specifically mentioned but do fit in one of those categories may be accepted. It is important to double check this with the clinic that you are considering and you may also want to contact the IRB that covers it if you have any doubt.
Stem Cell Treatment for Sports Injuries
Of particular interest for scientists is whether stem cell treatment is suitable for sports injuries. In fact, many adult stem cell investigations actually focus specifically on this field. This is also due to the fact that there are so many different types of injuries that can be sports-related. As a result, preliminary research is showing different treatment methods and many different outcomes as well. However, it seems that stem cell treatment is able to speed up healing and recovery, reduce fibrosis and scarring and enable areas that could previously not be healed to heal and stop them from hurting.
If you are considering stem cell treatment, it is vital that you inform yourself as much as possible first.