Summit Spine & Joint Centers offers regenerative medicine, which is the use of your own body’s natural healing agents to repair or reduce the damage and progression of a musculoskeletal or orthopedic injury. Regenerative medicine is a non-invasive approach to healing injuries and chronic pain that doesn’t rely on pain medication or surgery. Rather, it uses stem cells and plasma-rich platelets to naturally heal your body’s tissue.
Is regenerative medicine right for you? Dr. Gabriel Marrero goes into more detail regarding the process behind this form of treatment.
What Are Stem Cells?
Stem cells are cells that can essentially turn into other types of cells. They’re sometimes called specialized cells because they each have their own task and can become whatever type of cell they need to. The ability of stem cells to transform into practically any cell in the body allows them to go where they’re needed in order to heal degenerated, unhealthy tissue that could be causing you pain. These cells can become different organs and tissues in the body, including skin cells, cardiac (heart) tissue and nerve cells. They help the body continue to regenerate and heal itself, restoring its optimal function. Stem cells are the main way the body repairs an injury. There are different types of stem cells, but mesenchymal cells (MSCs) provide an enhanced repairing and healing response to musculoskeletal and orthopedic injuries.
What Is Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy?
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy uses platelets, which can be obtained from simply drawing your blood. Platelets are tiny cells containing thousands of growth factors that control and regulate the natural healing process by bringing stem cells to the injured site in your body. Once the blood is drawn, it’s spun in a centrifuge to extract the plasma from it. This plasma contains many of the components of the blood that allow it to nourish, repair and maintain the health of the body. In addition to its clotting factors, platelets are natural healing molecules that help recruit local cells to begin the repairing and healing process.
Where Do Stem Cells Come From?
Stem cells are naturally located throughout your body, in higher concentrations in places such as the bone marrow. There are adipose, or fat-derived, stem cells that can be aspirated from the buttocks or abdomen through liposuction. There are also bone marrow stem cells obtained from the pelvis and hip bone. Some research suggests that the most effective stem cells are those extracted from bone marrow.
How Are the Cells Obtained and Processed?
In the case of PRP therapy, blood is taken from arm veins and then the platelets are concentrated using a centrifuge. For stem cells from bone marrow, blood is taken from the pelvis bone using a special needle, then stem cells are concentrated using the centrifuge. Stem cells from fat are obtained from aspiration of fat through liposuction. However, a higher number of stem cells per volume are obtained from bone marrow aspiration. Your team will review your options with you and discuss which extraction method would be most appropriate for you in regards to stem cell therapy.
What Types of Conditions Can Be Treated Using Stem Cell Therapy and PRP?
Any musculoskeletal or orthopedic injury has the potential to be treated through regenerative medicine. Tennis elbow, plantar fasciitis, bursitis, rotator cuff tendon tear, torn vertebral disc, degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis, and sprained ligaments all have the potential to be healed with stem cell therapy or PRP therapy.
How Can I Know if I’m a Candidate for Regenerative Medicine?
You’ll need to have a medical evaluation by a regenerative medical specialist to learn if you would benefit from regenerative medicine. The specialist will review your condition, overall health, past medical history, imaging studies and medications, among other factors, to confirm if you’re a suitable candidate for the procedure.
What Should I Expect in Regards to Treatment With Regenerative Medicine?
You may feel sore at the site of the injection for few days after the procedure. However, the recovery is significantly faster than any other surgical procedure. You shouldn’t have any adverse reaction to the injection since you’re simply receiving your own cells back into your body.
How Much Does Regenerative Medicine Cost?
Once you have an exam with one of our regenerative medicine specialists, he or she will be able to discuss with you which form of treatment will best fit your type of injury and the associated costs. Treatment and costs can vary based on your unique body and treatment options.
Interested in Regenerative Medicine? Contact Us!
Our team at Summit Spine & Joint Centers is here to answer all your questions. We provide innovative regenerative medicine therapy to individuals suffering from all types of pain. Contact us online to request an appointment or call us to schedule a consultation. We look forward to reviewing all your treatment options to help resolve your pain!