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May 30, 2019

Trusting Stem Cell Therapies

Recently, an article published by the Washington Post discussed the growing number of stem cell clinics in the United States offering “cures” for conditions like age-related macular degeneration, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.

Unfortunately for people who put their faith in these clinics, direct-to-consumer stem cell therapies are unsafe and not approved by the FDA or Health Canada. Unregulated stem cell clinics exploit people desperate to find cures in the name of profit, offering “treatments” that are little more than quackery.

There are no proven stem cell treatments for vision loss. While stem cell therapy is a promising research field for blinding eye diseases, unproven treatments pose a risk to patients’ health and safety. For the individual profiled in the Washington Post, putting her trust in an unregulated stem cell treatment for age-related macular degeneration cost her what remaining sight she had.

FBC is extremely hopeful about the future of legitimate stem cell treatments for blinding eye diseases, but proven cures are not yet a reality. Before any treatment reaches patients, it must undergo the clinical trial process. Many of these unscrupulous clinics offer to inject stem cells as part of a so-called clinical trial, extracting payment from patients to participate. No legitimate research centre will ask you for payment to be part of a clinical trial.

Learn more about stem cell treatments by reading this New York Times article, and by visiting FBC’s Must-Read Resource on Stem Cell Tourism.

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