Attitudes of Health Professionals in Pakistan Towards SHED (Stem Cells from Human Exfoliated Deciduous Teeth) Practice

Maria Khadija Siddiqui                           BDS, MSc
Hana Pervez                                            BDS, FCPS
Marium Khawaja                                     BDS
Shaqufta Naqvi                                       MBBS, MPH
Marium Iqbal                                           BDS, FCPS, MHPE
Arif Mansoor                                           BDS
Muhammad Saad Shaikh                       BDS, MSc

OBJECTIVE: The objectives of our study were to assess the attitude of health professionals, regarding the use of Stem cells
from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) in regenerative medicine and to explore its prospects in a developing country
like Pakistan
METHODOLOGY: A questionnaire based cross-sectional survey of practitioners in medicine and dentistry was conducted
in Pakistan. The questionnaire commenced with demographic and professional background questions and followed by 11
descriptive questions. These 11 questions include, awareness of the term SHED, interest rating on a 5-point Likert scale, choice
to use SHED for research purposes, opinion of storing and donating stem cells in a stem cell storage facility, medico-legal
support for SHED in Pakistan and lastly medium of choice to raise awareness regarding SHED. A convenient sampling procedure
was used in which 250 subjects from dental and medical fields were selected for the study.
RESULTS: The total response rate was 98.8 %. At least half of the participants (56.68%) were unaware about the term SHED.
The chi-square test was used to compare the results and determine if there were any significant differences in the responses
between the dentistry and medical groups. P-values less than 0.05 were deemed statistically significant. Dental professionals
showed a significantly greater interest (p = 0.015) in SHED practice as compared to medical professionals. The majority (61%)
of health professionals agreed on primary teeth banking. Nearly 31 % of health professionals appeared hesitant to support the
medico-legal status of SHED practice in Pakistan.
CONCLUSION: Despite showing moderate interest, many health professionals of Pakistan still unfamiliar with the term
SHED. Educational interventions on the ‘ awareness of SHED applications and its ethical concern’ are required to be organized
for health professionals in Pakistan.
KEYWORDS:  Professionals, Cross-sectional study, Stem cells, Deciduous teeth, Human
HOW TO CITE:  Siddiqui MK, Pervez H, Khawaja M, Naqvi S, Iqbal M, Mansoor A, Shaikh MS. Attitudes of health professionals
in Pakistan towards SHED (stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth) practice. J Pak Dent Assoc 2024;33(1):10-16.
Received: 14 August 2023, Accepted: 23 March 2024

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