Stem Cells Therapy
Stem cells are the master cells that form all your tissues and organs. You can see them as the raw materials of your body. Furthermore, stem cell therapy has become essential for treating many diseases today.
Your stem cells divide in the right conditions. Doctors call these resulting cells ‘daughter cells’. This process can occur in your body or the lab. Stem cells can develop into cells with different tasks. Also, they can divide and multiply forever. Your newly formed daughter cells can develop into new stem cells or cells with a specific function. For example, stem cells can become brain cells, heart muscle cells, blood cells, or bone cells.
By dividing, stem cells can transform into new stem cells, organs, and tissues. This amazing feature plays a role in developing and regenerating all kinds of tissues and organs throughout your life. The process starts from the day you are an embryo. Also, as you grow as an organism, the transforming capacity of stem cells decreases. No other cell in your body can produce new types of cells.
Stem Cell Types
Stem cells divide into 4 groups according to their sources:
Embryonic Stem Cells
These stem cells emerge from 3-5 day old embryos. They are capable of giving rise to several different cell types. These cells can develop into new stem cells or any cell type in your body. This ability allows doctors to regenerate or repair your tissues or organs.
Adult Stem Cells
If you are an adult, these stem cells exist in small numbers in all of your tissues. However, adult stem cells do not have the ability of embryonic cells. Also, they are more limited in function.
Additionally, these limits seem broader than before. Until recently, doctors thought that adult stem cells could only develop into cells of a similar type. New findings show that adult stem cells can turn into different types of cells. This breakthrough may give a chance for the treatment of many diseases.
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Scientists form these cells by genetic reprogramming. They genetically modify adult stem cells and give them embryonic stem cell functions. Moreover, they can prevent the immune system from rejecting new cells. However, these studies have not yet been conducted on humans. As a result, the effect on humans is still unknown.
Perinatal Stem Cells
Scientists discovered the presence of stem cells in the fluid of a developing fetus. Additionally, these stem cells can develop into specialized cells. However, more research is necessary on this subject.
Regenerative Medicine in Clinical Practices of Stem Cells
Doctors can use stem cell therapy to cure damaged or nonfunctioning tissues and organs. They still consider this type of treatment as experimental. Therefore, your or your relatives’ approval is necessary.
Stem cell therapy is effective in treatment for:
- Eye diseases
- Cartilage and degenerative joint diseases
- Ischemic limb problems
- Burn treatment
Brain and Nervous System Diseases
Scientists found that stem cells therapy is effective and safe for the following:
- Spinal cord injury
- Traumatic brain injury
- Cerebral palsy
- Autoimmune encephalitis
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Friedreich’s ataxia
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy
Doctors saw very positive results with the cooperation of patients.
Doctors observed sensory and motor function improvement in patients with spinal cord injuries with stem cell therapy. They found that the lost sensory functions in the bowel and bladder were regained. Moreover, patients were able to walk with support.
Additionally, doctors observed increased mobility and improved sensation and balance in extremities.
Stem cell therapy increases sitting and movement balance in patients with cerebral palsy. Also, the patients improved their ability to speak, understand and eat. Moreover, they were able to solve simple mathematical problems and socialize.
Orthopedics and Traumatology
Cartilage problems, tendon injuries, and joint problems also respond to stem cell therapy. Also, doctors can create cartilage tissue with cells from your tissue. They can do this even when cartilage formation is almost over. As a result, doctors can achieve structural and functional regeneration.
Diabetes occurs due to a decrease in the number or function of your insulin-secreting cells. The disease causes your blood sugar to increase at dangerous levels. Scientists are hopeful for the effective treatment of diabetes with stem cell therapy. In their experiments on mice, they observed that they could prevent hyperglycemia with stem cell transplantation. Also, they found that the stem cells were transformed into cells that produce insulin.
Certain eye diseases, such as retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration, have no cure. However, scientists managed to regain the visual function of mice with stem cell therapy. Only, they did not conduct this treatment on humans yet.
Stem cell therapy offers cosmetic improvements in wounds, burns, scars and anti-aging. With the cells from your tissue, your doctor may rejuvenate your skin. Also, they can correct any deformed areas with a more natural look.
If you have a chronic disease such as COPD, or cystic fibrosis, stem cell therapy may be the answer you are looking for. Stem cell therapy can heal the damaged areas in your lung. Also, it can enable your tissues to heal a lot quicker. Stem cell therapy reduces inflammation in your lungs and prevents infection.
Stem cell therapy is a reliable and cheaper treatment method. It is a suitable treatment for many health problems. This is a very promising treatment in the field of medicine. The recovery of lost functions and complications is now possible.