Stem Cell Storm Builds in the Philippines

What the heck is going on with stem cells in the Philippines lately?

It seems like a wild, stormy mixture of supposed good and very bad news streaming out of that country all at once.

Many questions remain both on the alleged upside and the down side.

Do the reported deaths of 3 politicians really have anything to do with stem cells at all?

Why is the head of the Philippine Medical Association, Leo Olarte, seemingly plugging affordable Philippine stem cell treatments at the same time as he is condemning “foreign” stem cell treatments?

A more recent piece has now supposedly identified at least two of the three who died:

The late Rep. Erico Aumentado of Bohol province underwent stem cell therapy in Germany last September and felt like “Superman” before he died of pneumonia last Christmas at the age of 72, his son told the Inquirer on Monday….

Camiguin Rep. Pedro Romualdo also underwent stem cell therapy before he died on April 24 at the age of 77, also of pneumonia.

 

Now we have a report that one of the founding members of the Philippine Stem Cell Society Dr. Levi John Lansangan (pictured at right in a screenshot from a news video), is very concerned about  “foreign” doctors giving stem cell treatments in the Philippines:

Dr. Levi John Lansangan

“Foreign doctors are not allowed to practice in our country. Doing it in hotels, in unsanitary conditions, is very prone to infection. It is against the regulations posted by the DOH in its website,” he said.

This quote seems quite logical and in my opinion Lansangan as quoted in this article seems more realistic about stem cells, However, at the same time Lansangan is excited about domestic stem cell treatments in the Philippines in a way that seems perhaps a bit too positive:

“…with stem cell, we’re giving hope. Not hope in the sense that we are just giving placebo but hope that there is really something into it that’s really big,” Lansangan said.

The bottom line is that patients deserve to be treated with respect and dignity by trained providers in an evidenced based manner, no matter where it takes place.

The situation in the Philippines seems to be spiraling out of control this year. I am very concerned there may be more deaths and more patients put at risk.

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  1. Pingback: Blog – Stem Cell Storm Builds in the Philippines (Knoepfler Lab Stem Cell Blog) | Stu's Stem Cell Blog

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