What are stem cells?
The basic components of our human body are the stem cells. Their most amazing characteristic is they capacity to transform in any type of cell, from skin to muscle or bone cells. Although medicine has documented the use of stem cells for quite some time now, regenerative medicine is just picking up in popularity, and extensive research in the field is pushing the boundaries of imagination and human perception related to the possibilities that stem cells have to offer. Some even go as far as calling stem cells the holy grail of regenerative medicine.
Stem cells are collected from your body and they are often adult stem cells (Mesenchymal), collected from the patient’s bone marrow (aspirated from the hipbone) or via liposuction from adipose (fat) tissue located on the abdomen. There are often stem cells obtained from amniotic fluid. These come from women undergoing a scheduled C-section where the amniotic fluid is normally discarded afterwards.
The treatment varies from case to case. Stem cells harvested from the bone marrow have better ability to repair and differentiate into bone, cartilage or ligaments while adipose stem cells have increased regenerative properties to create new blood vessels, which ultimately helps the tissue by delivering essential nutrients and oxygen. There are no ethical issues revolving around adult stem cells therapy.
What are stem cell injections?
If you suffer from any degenerative disease such as arthritis or osteoarthritis, join pain, tissue damage in rotator cuff tears, tennis elbow, meniscal tears or ligament tears, then you should know that stem cells injection have the ability to repair and regenerate the injured tissues, thus relieving the pain, increasing mobility and improving performance.
Stem cell therapy is a non-surgical method of treatment, the procedure is conducted by a specialized physician, takes up to one hour and in most cases patients need only one session, although in severe cases, patient’s are recommended to have up to three sessions, with a 3 to 6 month interval.
Dr. Raj is a top orthopedic in Los Angeles and offers all types of stem cell therapy for degenerative arthritis, tendonitis or ligament injury.
If you are considering stem cell injection therapy, you should contact Beverly Hills Orthopedic Institute and prepare to have your medical records reviewed and some X-rays or MRI scans done. It’s a fact that stem cell injections are not suitable for patients who use high doses of Coumadin, or who suffer from lymphoma or leukemia, infections, blood diseases, or multiple medical issues.
What is Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP)?
Platelet Rich Plasma results after spinning at high speed, with the help of a centrifuge, the patient’s own blood, in order to obtain the essential elements for the natural healing process to occur. These elements are called platelets and growth factors and since the plasma is not tampered, there are no risks of allergies associated with PRP therapy. Once the plasma is ready, under ultrasound guidance, the physician identifies the injured area of the tendon or ligament, and then injects the platelet rich plasma which activates itself once it reaches the damaged collagen fibers. Moreover, the platelet rich plasma has a magnetic effect, because it attracts other important healing factors to the injured tissue, and this ultimately helps speed up the healing and regenerative process.
What are the risks?
There are little to no risks associated with stem cell injections because what is being injected comes from the patient’s own body or the amniotic fluid offered is processed at an FDA regulated lab. Aside from some mild tenderness at the site of injection, which is easily remedied with an over-the-counter pain reliever or even some ice, there are no pains or side effects expected with stem cell injections.