It is estimated that 23% of all adults in the United States have arthritis, making it a leading cause of work disability. Arthritis often occurs with age due to wear and tear of joints. As cartilage deteriorates, the cushion and protection of your joints decreases causing inflammation due to the friction of bone-on-bone contact. With new advances in regenerative medicine, it is possible to use your own bodies stem cells to help regenerate tissue, in this case cartilage.
What are Stem Cells?
Stem cells are undifferentiated cells, meaning they have yet to develop into a specific cell variant. Your body is full of all sorts of cells. Each cell type is programmed to develop into a specific body tissue (e.g., hepatocytes (liver cells), osteocytes (bone cells), leukocytes (white blood cells)). Stem cells are so young that they have yet to be programmed to become any specific tissue. This is why stem cells can be manipulated to target areas of the body that need repair.
Repairing cartilage and treating pain
To administer Stem cell therapy, Dr. Fiks removes stem cells out of your bone marrow with a needle and reinjects the cells into the affected area to accelerate the body’s natural healing of issues like tendon injuries and osteoarthritis. The treatment is successful because stem cells are undifferentiated, which means they can replicate themselves into multiple tissue types.
What to expect from stem cell therapy
We perform stem cell treatments during routine office visits, and you can go home immediately after your appointment. However, if needed, sedation can be administered to allow for a more comfortable experience.
It’s important to note that regenerative medicine techniques, such as stem cell therapy, heal damage on a cellular level, so you shouldn’t expect to see immediate results. In fact, you can develop minor or slightly worsening symptoms, such as discomfort or swelling for a short period of time after your injection. This is completely normal and indicates the healing process is underway.
Over the following weeks, you can expect:
- Less inflammation
- Reduced pain
- Increased lubrication in the joint
- Increase in physical activities
Dr. Fiks will typically perform the injection once and does not require any follow up treatments.
If you have arthritis symptoms, stem cell therapy may be able to help you. To learn more, book an appointment over the phone with Advanced Pain Management Center today.