21st-century medicine is evolving rapidly, and in the rush to receive stem cell treatments the safety of patients is placed at risk by unproven therapies that can negatively affect the patient’s health. Recently, the United States Food and Drug Administration began actively targeting clinics that offer unproven therapies to their patients. The goal of these efforts is to shut-down dangerous clinics before they can further harm patients who come to them for care.
Preying on the Promise of Stem Cells
Stem cell therapies are being investigated for treating everything from blindness and autism to cancer and Alzheimer’s. However, these treatments are still investigational. The majority of treatments are still in the clinical trial phase within the United States. In fact, the only treatments approved by the FDA are for stem cell treatment for bone marrow transplantation and a handful of blood-related disorders.
Stem cell treatments promise cures for some frightening diseases and disabilities. Unscrupulous healthcare providers at home and abroad prey on people’s fears of these diseases and afflictions. These providers frequently charge exorbitant fees and deliver minimal results. Treatments leave patients frustrated, exhausted, and often broke. They also leave them dealing with the same conditions for which they sought treatment.
Permanent Damage is Possible
Severe damage is possible when a medical treatment fails. Individuals can be left blind, paralyzed, or fighting serious, potentially life-threatening infections. While medical malpractice lawyers can help individuals or their survivors pursue compensation for their injuries, it is quite possible that the injuries could have long-term, potentially permanent consequences to their health and quality of life.
Skepticism is Safety
If it is too good to be true, then it almost certainly is. While medical technology is advancing and making significant strides in improving patient health and outcomes, many miracles remain myths. Patients should only undergo FDA approved stem cell therapies and should view promises of unproven claims with extreme skepticism.
Most importantly, patients should not seek out or undertake stem cell therapies conducted abroad. For starters, the health and safety standards within these countries are often of a lower-standard which increases the risk of injury and potentially lethal infection. Moreover, should something happen, individuals are left to the mercy of a foreign court system which most likely does not have the same protections for injured parties that patients and their medical malpractice lawyers can use to recover damages.