ASSESSING KNOWLEDGE AND EXPECTATIONS ABOUT STEM CELL THERAPY AMONG HEALTH PROFESSIONALS IN THE BUEA REGIONAL HOSPITAL
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BACKGROUND: Health care providers as a trusted source of information for most patients should be able to provide counseling services to patients on the concept on stem cell utilization, benefits and its practice implications.
OBJECTIVE: The objective was to assess the knowledge and expectations of stem cell therapy among health personnel in the BRH.
METHOD: After the authorization from the Delegation of Public Health and from the director of the BRH, questionnaires were administered to the study population including doctors, nurses, and other health care providers such as administrative staff, laboratory technicians, physicians and their responses were collected and analyzed using the statistical package for the social sciences software.
RESULTS: 65 health personnel were recruited in the study. The age range of the study participants was 21years and above.
The most of the participants were females with age group within 30years to 45years and had has more than 5 years of working experience.
A Pearson’s correlation between knowledge and expectation scores was statistically significant.
CONCLUSION: Data from this present research revealed the high levels of knowledge and positive expectations towards stem cell therapy.
Therefore, this research suggest that educational programs on stem cell and stem cell therapy should be implemented to improve stem cell knowledge and encourage a more positive expectation.
Stem cells are undifferentiated cells found in the human body that have the unique ability to divide continuously, build every tissue in the human body hence having potential for future therapeutic uses in tissue regeneration and repair .
Stem cells are repair units of the body and their Stem cells are undifferentiated cells found in the human body that have the unique ability to main function is to replenish and regenerate damaged tissues .
Based on the extensive stem cell research findings, many scientist have claimed that the cells could potentially generate cures and treatments for various diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and igniting hopes of achieving stem-cell based replacement therapy in the medical setting.
Stem cells are found in all multicellular organisms and there are two broad types of mammalian stem cells; embryonic stem cells that are isolated from the inner cell mass of blastocyst and adult stem cells that are found in adult tissues .
Embryonic stem cells are undifferentiated cells  and they are not programmed to be specific to any matured cell type found in the human body.
Therefore, ESCs are fundamental in developing a diverse supply of tissues in the treatment of various diseases such as spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s disease Alzheimer and cardiovascular disease.
Nevertheless, the research on ESCs has been an issue on ethical, legal and social controversy because it involves killing of embryos. Stem cell transplant is a surviving procedure that can increase life expectancy of end-stage or chronically ill patients .
On the other hand ASCs, which are found in almost all organs of the autologous transplantation, reducing the risk of graft rejection and allogenicity problems.
ASCs such as cardiac stem cells have been successfully used to repair the damage caused by heart attacks .
Due to the bright potential of stem-cell based treatment, it is vital for health care providers to keep abreast of current advances in stem cell science, particularly when there is an enormous potential of revolutionary therapy in the form of cell replacement therapy.
Studies in other countries have shown good assessments in the knowledge of stem cell therapy together with high expectations. However, limited studies have been done in Cameroon to assess the knowledge regarding stem cell therapy and the expectations of its use in Cameroon.
In Cameroon, people usually live with many serious diseases like cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, osteoarthritis and others with no good treatments.
This then brings the need of this study to assess the knowledge and expectations of stem cells and in effective treatment of these diseased conditions.
This study was aimed at assessing the knowledge and expectations of stem cell therapy among health personnel in the Buea Regional Hospital.
Stem cell therapy knowledge and expectations in Buea Regional Hospital is high.
To assess the knowledge and expectations of stem cell therapy among health professionals in the Buea Regional Hospital.
- To obtain information about stem cells among health personnel.
- To determine the level of expectations for future use.