Will Stem Cell Therapy Replace Orthopedic Surgery in the Future?

Stem cell therapy is a hot topic, and for good reason. Many people who suffer from various joint breakdowns are flocking to try stem cell therapy.

Do you blame them? Look at the current treatment cycle of one who has had a joint problem for some time. Take a person who has a degenerative knee (arthritic) condition.

Here is a typical treatment cycle:

  • NSAIDS – Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
    • Side effects
      • Linked to ulcers, heart attacks
      • 15,000 deaths year attributed to NSAIDs use
  • When NSAIDS no longer work – Take more NSAIDs and/or higher doses
  • Eventually get an X-Ray
  • Cortisone injections
    • Side effects
      • Cortisone degrades bone density and cartilage over time
      • Eventually worsens or speeds up the joint degeneration
      • Only temporary – wears off
      • Can increase/worsen systemic diseases like diabetes
      • Can only be done 4 times max in one’s life
  • MRI
  • Arthroscopy
  • Joint replacement surgery

Does this treatment cycle sound familiar?

I have always been one to advocate for conservative care. Surgery should be a last resort! Stem cell therapy is becoming more and more popular as a non-surgical alternative. Can you blame people running to this treatment, rather than have a joint replacement? Look at just a few of the possible side effects from a knee replacement surgery.

  • Blood clots
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Wound infection
  • Nerve and other tissue damage
  • Bone fracture
  • Dislocation
  • Bleeding and wound hematoma
  • Pain
  • Stiffness

Not to mention the painful months of rehab, and once surgery is done, you can never go back. I know many who have done well with a replacement, and others not so well.

So why are so many people getting regenerative stem cell injections? Well, let’s look at the procedure:

In-office procedure
No anesthesia, hospital stays, antibiotics, pain medication
Zero recovery time
No reported adverse effects or rejection

Big time difference!

Here are a few of the conditions we have seen respond well to Regenerative Therapy:

  • Shoulder pain
    • Rotator cuff injury
    • Biceps tendon tears
    • Joint degeneration (Arthritis)
  • Elbow Pain
    • Tennis elbow
    • Chronic sprain / strain
  • Knee Pain
    • Mild to moderate osteoarthritis (Arthritis)
    • Ligament tears
    • Meniscus tear
  • Hip Pain
    • Bursitis
    • Arthritis
  • Foot Pain
    • Plantar facitis
    • Achilles tear
    • Arthritis

Stem cell regenerative therapy is not for everyone. However, we are seeing great results. We have seen many people avoid surgery, who are ecstatic with the results! Check out pre and post X-Rays of one of our patients – notice the outside of the right knee before, and how much more space there is 5 months post injection! That is new cartilage, folks! This patient was told she was “bone-on-bone” and needed a knee replacement.

Gary Rademacher D.C., CCST

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