Dr. Oz, Suzanne Somers and stem cell expert, Dr. J. Peter Rubin, discuss experimental stem cell breast surgeries. Experimental stem cell surgery is now being used to help patients re-grow breast tissue after a lumpectomy and for breast enhancement surgeries. Dr. Rubin, Chief of Plastic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh and member of ThePlasticSurgeryChannel.com recently appeared on The Dr. Oz show to give his point of view on the hype that surrounds stem cells in the plastic surgery world.
Using Stem Cells to Re-Grow Breast Tissue
On Friday, December 16, 2011, Dr. Rubin along with Dr. Oz and Suzanne Somers discussed the role stem cells may play in plastic surgery. Dr. Rubin says, “We are optimistic about stem cell based technologies for breast reconstruction, and need to approach the topic cautiously and with great respect for the safety of our patients. These are experimental therapies, and we need to collect data under approved clinical studies to be able to tell if this will be safe and effective.”
On the Dr. Oz Show, Somers opened up about her battle with breast cancer and the stem cell surgery that she says, helped reconstruct her breast. Somers’ procedure is considered to be a minimally invasive method of restoring breast volume using fat moved from another part of the body.
Consumers Should Use Caution
Despite celebrity endorsements, Dr. Rubin says consumers really need to be cautious when considering stem cell therapies. He says, “The biggest problem encountered with fat grafting is that fat can lose volume or be absorbed by the body over time leaving less of an affect from the original treatment.”
As a practicing plastic surgeon and a scientific researcher in stem cells, Rubin says, “There are encouraging data from laboratory and clinical studies to suggest that the use of adult stem cells is a very promising field, but as our comprehensive review of the current scientific literature shows, the data available today do not substantiate the marketing claims being made to patients seeking aesthetic surgery and aesthetic medical treatments.”
Dr. Rubin recently led a special joint task force to research and address concerns over claims and clinical practices using stem cells that have not been substantiated by scientific evidence. As a medial advisory board member for the ThePlasticSurgeryChannel.com, Rubin details some of the confusion over stem cells in the following videos:
- Researchers Explore Stem Cell Facelift
- Plastic Surgeons Say Do Not Believe the Stem Cell Hype
- Stem Cell Facelift Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-Dr.-Rubin
The two leading plastic surgery associations, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), back up Rubin’s statements saying, “While there is tremendous potential for the future use of stem cells in aesthetic surgical procedures, the scientific evidence and other data are very limited in terms of assessing the safety or efficacy of stem cell therapies in aesthetic medicine.
Rubin wants patients to know that while this technology is promising, it is an experimental treatment and should only be done as part of an approved clinical trial. He says patients should always see a board certified plastic surgeon for a proper evaluation before considering any stem cell procedure.
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