The use of stem cell therapy (SCT) is limited to cure only a number of conditions and diseases but these do not include diabetes.
According to a public advisory from the Philippine Society of Endocrinology and Metabolism (PSEM), stem cell therapy is regarded as only “an experimental treatment for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.”
“There is as yet, no conclusive evidence that SCT is effective and safe for diabetes and as such, it cannot be made available to individuals with diabetes as a standard treatment like the usual drug prescriptions,” the PSEM said.
“SCT can only be given to individuals with diabetes under controlled conditions such as under experimental protocols of clinical trials,” it added.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has earlier released three indications in which the use of stem cell therapy (SCT) may be considered standard of care.
These are for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, corneal resurfacing with limbal stem cells, and skin regeneration with epidermal stem cells (for burns).
“SCT provides medical practitioners an innovative approach to restore health and offers the patients alternative choices,” the FDA said.
However, it noted that “the promise of stem cell therapy must be backed by science- and evidence-based medicine, before it can be part of the standard health care.”
The FDA also said that any clinical use of stem cell therapy for diabetes outside of clinical trials is considered illegal.
“Patients receiving stem cell therapy under clinical trials should not pay for these experimental treatments and must sign an informed consent form that explains the procedure, its benefits and possible harms,” the FDA said.