Stem Cells Can Be Used for Bone Grafts
Stem cells can now be used for bone grafts, according to Dr. Glenn M. Weinraub, a foot and ankle surgeon based in California and the president of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS).
Weinraub was leading a discussion on bone healing at the annual ACFAS conference in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. when he brought up a new approach to bone grafts, which are used to treat several conditions, including open fractures with bone loss and bone tumors.
Harvesting a patients own bone has always been considered the gold standard, but nowadays I think that concept should be thought of as the historical standard, Weinraub said in a statement, according to UPI.
Surgeons often use bone grafts to help heal patients who generally have trouble healing, including diabetics and patients with nutritional deficiencies. However, Weinraub believes stem cells provide a better method of doing bone grafts. Stem cells can be taken from the patients themselves or from a lab, which harvasts stems cells from donors.
These cells have the potential to become almost any other cell in the body and can actually form bone, Weinraub said.