In this age of advanced medical discoveries, the use of stem cells as a potential treatment for various debilitating illnesses has become more and more possible. Stem cells have the ability to multiply and convert into various different cell types during early development and growth. They renew themselves through cell division, acting as part of an internal repair process, and can either remain stem cells or specialize to perform specific functions in the body.
The study of embryonic stem cells reveals that they can be used to potentially treat almost any illness. For example, a stem cell transplant could be used to replace neurons in patients suffering from a wide range of neurological problems, including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. They could also revolutionize the way diabetes is treated by restoring the cells that stimulate the body’s natural production of insulin.
However, despite the promising research, not all stem cell treatments being offered prove to be effective, or even necessary. In a phenomenon referred to as “stem cell medical tourism,” clinics and other entities encourage the use of unproven stem cell therapies as treatment for certain medical problems. Those behind this dangerous practice prey on distraught patients with grave illnesses who are willing to accept any form of treatment if it could potentially lessen their pain or lengthen their lives.
Through this medical tourism, stem cells have been marketed as treatments for a range of illnesses, from lung disease to heart problems, and yet only bone marrow transplants are considered to be a non-experimental stem cell procedure. In countries where the medical field falls under less regulation , doctors are able to exploit their patients and employ experimental treatments involving stem cells, which pose unknown dangers. Enlisting patients in clinical trials is one thing, but these stem cells procedures are being hailed as “established treatments with proven results.” This practice promotes the mindset that patients are guinea pigs to be experimented on, rather than human beings with fundamental rights.
If you’ve been one of these guinea pigs and a doctor has put you or a loved one in danger, make sure to give Scartelli Olszewski, P.C. a call and we will help to ensure that your rights are protected.