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Biologics Feature

AAOS Issues New Position on Biologic and Stem Cell Treatment

Biloine W. Young • Fri, December 22nd, 2017

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The board of directors of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) has approved a new position statement that urges orthopedic surgeons and patients to be fully aware of the risks and benefits of stem cell and other biologic treatments for musculoskeletal joint conditions.

The statement is titled "Use of Emerging Biologic Therapies.”

Biologics are treatments isolated or derived from natural sources. Common biologic treatments are the injection of a patient's or donor's blood heavily concentrated with platelets into an osteoarthritis infected joint. Biologics also are used to repair damaged cartilage.

"While gaining in popularity, and providing relief for some patients, biologic treatments may lack the demonstrated safety and efficacy of many traditional orthopaedic therapeutics," said J. Tracy Watson, M.D., chair of the AAOS Biologics Committee. "The Academy wants to make sure that doctors and patients are making informed treatment decisions, based on the most current research and product indications."

Watson believes that surgeons should be cognizant of the risks, benefits, regulatory status and labeled indications of the products they use.

Two Academy guidelines are referenced in the new statement. They are Orthopaedic Surgical Consent and Standards of Professionalism.

These reinforce the role of the orthopedic surgeons in fully informing patients of the risks and benefits of various treatments, including biologics, and securing patient consent before moving forward with a particular modality.

The new statement recommends that orthopedic surgeons and their affiliated hospitals and clinics participate in registries to provide data on the efficacy of biologic treatments.

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One Response to “AAOS Issues New Position on Biologic and Stem Cell Treatment”

  1. Plese explain exactly what you mean by ” Some of these newly introduced devices and biologics do not have sufficient basic science justification or long-term outcome studies to substantiate their continued safety and efficacy.

    Happy to explain the basic science, immunology and stem cell biology to anyone who will listen, not unlike the last decade. I wrote the first protocols in the nation because I was comfortable I had ‘mathematically proofed’ the procedures I offered and look where it went.

    Always happy to help and have published a poster that explains what every orthopedic surgeon in the country and the world needs to know at MINIMUM if they are going to offer these biologic solutions.

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