Those who regularly read my blogs are aware that for the past several years, I have stated that there are no living stem cells in Birth Tissues such as Wharton’s Jelly. Umbilical Cord Blood, Placental Tissue and Amniotic Fluid. Nevertheless, as recently as last winter, the Stem Cell Institutes of America continued to hold seminars and make claims regarding cartilage regeneration after an injection of Amniotic Fluid. Ultimately, it was investigative Reporter Pam Zekman, at WBBM-TV in Chicago who exposed the fraud. At the about the same time, The Interventional Orthopedics Foundation published a position statement after investigating the many birth tissue products in the marketplace and found virtually no living stem cells in the many alternatives after processing, freezing, storing and thawing at the time of use. On currently, an article was published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine, again indicating that Birth Tissues were acellular-lacked living stem cells when processed and thawed.
My practice is based on Orthobiologics so misleading statements, bad actors, charlatans and liars for that matter are not my favorite people to say the least. Let’s update where the Birth Tissue purveyors have taken their most recent marketing campaigns now that the FDA and FTC are closing in. My favorite misleading statement is the Stem Cell Recruitment headline boldly appearing on the multiple outdoor advertising billboards ringing Chicago Tollways. There is no such thing as stem cell recruitment. A product introduced by a large pharmaceutical company several years ago had to be withdrawn when no such recruitment was scientifically demonstrated in an arthritic joint.
Now the marketing of Birth Tissues, that is Wharton’s Jelly, Umbilical Cord Blood, Placental Tissue and Amniotic Fluid has evolved from stem cells to Growth Factors. After all these years of claims to the contrary, the Birth Tissue Pharmaceutical manufacturers have admitted their products are acellular. The FDA and FTC have not yet taken a position on Growth Factors; these naturally occurring substances capable of stimulating cellular growth, proliferation, healing and cellular differentiation. In the past ten days, no less than four different orthobiologic distributors have admitted to me that Birth Products are acellular, that is lacking in stem cells, but it really isn’t significant because they have Growth Factors. I practice evidence-based medicine and to date, there is not one statistically significant, scientific trial documenting more than three months of pain relief with Birth Tissues, most recently marketed as a source of Growth Factors.
Will the attempt at making Birth Tissues great again by a change in marketing strategies result in relief of your joint pain and improve your function? Perhaps but it will take several years to document the results. In the meantime, we have published scientific evidence to support our approaches to relieving pain and improving function of the arthritic joint. To schedule a consultation, call (312) 475-1893.
You may visit my web site at sheinkopmd.com.