Stem Cell Therapy
Stem Cells were hailed as the Holy Grail of healing when they were first identified and studied and still have that potential. However it is not quite as straight forward as was first thought and although Stem Cell Therapy is offered by a number of MsRCVS there are good reasons why it has largely been put on hold within human medicine.
Stem Cells are pre-programmed to differentiate into certain cells and tissue and it is currently impossible to identify which Stem Cells in the bone marrow and circulation are going to become which tissue in advance. When bone marrow is harvested to collect Stem Cells with a view to repairing a tendon, ligament or muscle tear etc the proportion of relevant Stem Cells appropriate for the damaged tissue type within the total number of Stem Cells collected is very small. However, when introduced into a lesion the introduced Stem Cells are stimulated according to the leaking signalling molecules to differentiate into the damaged tissue type. The lesion heals and everything appears to be good and it looks like Stem Cells have fulfilled their original promise.
However, with no further leakage of the signalling molecules that direct the Stem Cell division into a certain tissue, the original pre-programmed cell type override kicks in. Cells start to divide and become the tissue type they were originally intended to be. This results in the wrong tissue in the wrong situation which forces the body to respond against these cells which creates renewed weakness in the original site of injury which predisposes it to another lesion at that site.
Until Stem Cells can be identified according to future tissue type at harvest they remain a less than satisfactory technique.