1. No competent ophthalmologist treats both eyes simultaneously, even with approved treatments.
2. All credible treatments have been studied with a verifiable, repeatable study approved by the FDA.
Always ask the treating physician for scientific peer reviewed articles.
Always ask for a written consent form. It should list all possible side effects and complications. This is an accepted standard of care. Absent this document the provider is guilty of malpractice, and it would be indefensible in court.
Always ask your physician for a referral to a local ophthalmologist, (BOARD CERTIFIED) for his opinion.
The FDA has drafted guidelines on how to oversee stem-cell clinics. The agency says stem cells do not have to be regulated as drugs as long as clinics follow certain standards, like if they only minimally manipulate the cells and don’t change their purpose in the body. For example, transferring fat from the belly to breasts would not fall under FDA purview because the fat is still acting as fat. But if stem cells are being separated from fat and then injected to treat a disease, then the FDA may have reason to step in.
Remember if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is not.
New York Times Article
The National Eye Institute and the National Institute for Health fund many of these studies.
Clinical Trials lists all current research and the phase of study.
1. Clinical Study of Subretinal Transplantation of Human Embryo Derived Retinal Pigment Epitheliums in Treatment of Diseases
3. Study of Subretinal Implantation of Human Embryonic Derived RPE in Advanced Dry AMD
Stem cell treatments are successful for specific disease. It is not a generic or 'miracle' panacea.
Gary M. Levin is a Board Certified Ophthalmologist. He blogs regularly on topics related to health issues, diseases and health reform. Comments are welcome.