Friday, 15 February 2013

MD Stem Cells, is it a scam ?

A company called "MD Stem Cells" (MDSC) announced today via a Press Release that it will begin offering stem cell injections to patients with various retinal and optic nerve diseases. However a quick look over their press release and their official website raises a lot of questions and suspicions!

"While they have had significant success in facilitating visual improvement for patients with a number of eye diseases, MD Stem Cells is constantly searching for ways to improve patient outcomes." Segment from the PR, referring to MDSC's doctors.

I have so many questions regarding this one! The company's official website fails to mention any previous clinical or preclinical studies conducted by its stuff. They only mention studies conducted by others, and even suggest us to have a look over the medical literature to see for ourselves that stem cell treatments do work. 

That is just so funny! So the company tries to gain the trust of future clients by pinpointing them to the results of other doctors?  Don't you have any results of your own to present? Don't you believe that someone who would go as far as receiving  a highly expensive, non-FDA approved and potentially dangerous treatment, would require something more than just a simple "go at PubMed and see for yourself, we say the truth, it does work"  in order to trust you?

The only "evidence" featured on their site is two testimonials, which are probably biased. Especially the first one seems so fishy and staged. We see a barely functioning man with Parkinson's, who later gets a stem cell treatment and has a miraculous comeback! All his symptoms go away and can now play tennis again after so many years.. Their "testimonials" can be found here. Nevertheless, let's move on...

"We carefully evaluated these reports with our retinal surgeon. We were hopeful he could offer stem cells and their accompanying growth factors directly within the eye to augment the treatment of the deeper sensory layer such as in Macular Degeneration and to place them adjacent to the Nerve Fiber Layer to help optic nerve damage." Another segment from the PR

So here is my second question. Who exactly is "We"? How many doctors does your company have ? What is the name of your retinal surgeon?  I gave a thorough look to your site, only to find the name of just one doctor, "Dr Jeffrey Weiss" who is a board certified ophthalmologist and has completed two fellowships in vitreoretinal surgery

"MD Stem Cells works with physicians in Europe and the United States." 
 "The physicians and hospitals with whom we work use only Adult Stem Cells which means they are isolated from and returned to the same patient - it does not imply a specific patient age." Segments taken from the company's official website

Once again, generic statements, no specifics given.. Who are the physicians and doctors you work with? Why don't you get any more specific? It there anything to hide ? 

I will be contacting MD Stem Cells via twitter and their email address. Hopefully I will get a response! Stay tuned.

Update: MD Stem Cells responds

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