Umbrella review of systematic reviews with meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) using placebo/no intervention as control group. For meta-analyses of RCTs, outcomes with a random-effect p-value< 0.05, the GRADE (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation) assessment was used, classifying the evidence from very low to high. From 184 abstracts initially identified, 11 meta-analyses (for a total of 34 outcomes) were included. Half of the outcomes were statistically significant (p < 0.05), indicating that stem cells are more useful than placebo. High certainty of evidence supports the associations of the use of stem cells with a better left ventricular end systolic volume and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) in acute myocardial infarction; improved exercise time in refractory angina; a significant lower risk of amputation rate in critical limb ischemia; a higher successful rate in complete healing in case of lower extremities ulcer; and better values of LVEF in systolic heart failure, as compared to placebo.
The adoption of stem cells in clinical practice is supported by a high certainty of strength in different CVD, with the highest strength in acute myocardial infarction and refractory angina.
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