Stem Cell Medicine for Arthritis
For the young and elderly patient, stem cell and platelet rich plasma injections (PRP) for chronic disabling degenerative joint disease is the most cutting edge medicine available in order to drastically improve function that involves minimally invasive techniques. As of recently, very little has been provided between conservative care involving physical therapy or medications and a physician referring for surgical correction. Over the last few years, we have been providing these minimally invasive pain free procedures to improve a patient’s functioning through the healing and regrowth of vital joint tissue such as bone, cartilage and ligament. To be clear, the goal is to improve physical function and reduce pain. This medical treatment has been supported by abundant research in human and animal models so patients may be confident in the success of their care. The recognition of stem cell treatment to regrow joint structures is personally boosted by some of our most prominent athletes such as Kobe Bryant, Alex Rodrigues and Peyton Manning. In addition, universities have been developing and implementing stem cells or PRP with college athletes around the world for over a decade. Our success in the use of stem cells has been proven effective for knee, shoulder and hip osteoarthritis. Furthermore, tendonitis and tendonosis in the upper and lower extremities responds well to these therapies.
How does stem cell therapy work?
Spectrum Health regenerative treatments harness your body’s own adult stem cells and PRP to stimulate healing and speed repair for cartilage, bone and soft tissue injuries. We all have healing stem cells in our bodies. Different types of stem cells are located throughout the body and can be easily harnessed from adipose (fat) tissue and bone marrow concentrate. These cells act as repairmen and can regenerate into the type of cell that is needed when injected into an injured area. The PRP has an abundance of growth factors and when concentrated through our centrifuge process provides powerful stimulus to regenerate damaged tissue.
The full procedure itself involves our highly trained physicians using precision guided ultrasound or fluoroscopy to perform a needle (trocar) bone marrow aspiration or adipose mini liposuction of your own adult stem cells. They are usually taken from the hip, abdomen or both. The tissues are processed and highly concentrated through a complex centrifuge technique and then injected into the injured area. To further provide a more successful result, our procedures will have an Extracellular Fiber Matrix called AmnioFix injected into the knee to provide complex specialized collagen structure for cartilage and bone stem cells to anchor so it can grow more rapidly.
How long does the stem cell procedure take?
The Stem Cell procedure is virtually painless, takes 3 hours and is performed under local anesthesia. It requires little to no downtime and is effective, fast and safe. Please call and make an appointment to see if you are a candidate.
Stem Cell Treatment
Adult stem cells are derived from your bodies own adipose or bone marrow sources. They provide immune modulatory and inflammatory reducing reactions to many specific cells within the location they are placed. A fundamental property is to differentiate to cells needed in order regenerate damaged cartilage, bone, ligament and muscle tissue. Stem cells can also change to a variety of cells necessary to repair tissue such as cartilage and bone. As we age over time, these cells become decreased in the areas of damage and not recruited in numbers enough to heal many arthritic injuries. In our laboratory, we concentrate your cells through a minimally invasive and mostly painless procedure. As the cells are concentrated to high numbers, we are able to place them in specific areas to synthesize a dramatic healing response for damaged and degenerated joints. Stem cell treatment can be life changing when it provides relief of pain due to its healing effects. The most dramatic result is to greatly reduce the need for highly invasive procedures such as knee replacement surgery otherwise known as total knee arthroplasty. With this comes loss of possible complications such as blood clots, infections, and prolonged painful post-operative physical rehabilitation courses.
Platelet Rich Plasma Treatment
This is derived from our highly advanced centrifuging technique after we draw the patient's blood. In all blood products are many growth promoting factors that can initiate complicated healing reactions. Our clinic laboratory is responsible for selecting these components and condensing to concentrated levels which then promote healing of the musculoskeletal system such as knee joints. PRP is shown in numerous research studies to repair cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. In addition, a unique ability is to stimulate and work with stem cells to augment a more powerful regenerative effect on cartilage and bone. The use of PRP has also been well documented and brought to public attention through universities around the world in the pursuit of treating injured athletes. There is no shortage of studies designed to show benefits of PRP over the last decade of use and some are located through our educational links below.