The ongoing outcomes research is now allowing statisticians at Regenexx to provide significant data. As a member of the Regenexx network of clinicians, I contribute to that database. As an orthopedic surgeon, not only do I provide subjective data patient responses; I contribute the objective findings based on repeat patient examinations following an adult mesenchymal bone marrow derived stem cell intervention for arthritis. The most recent observation is that 60% of patients report continued improvement at 18 months following a procedure. That is not to say 40% have failed or are dissatisfied; rather 60% report continued improvement; “I am better than I was six months ago”.
Once again, I devoted some time to surfacing the Internet, this time during the Thanksgiving holiday; and once again I was amazed about what has been posted. Patients are increasingly trying to self educate by googling key words relating to arthritis and stem cells. How does a patient seeking minimally invasive assistance in postponing or possibly avoiding a joint replacement become informed? How does the same patient population try to make sense of the resistance from the orthopedic surgical community by availing oneself of the success inherent in cellular orthopedics?
I will try to explain.
1) Adipose derived stem cells may not be used in the skeleton. In order to liberate the stem cells (stromal vascular fraction), the fat has to be treated with the enzyme collagenase. That is forbidden by the FDA; hence the restriction on clinical usage of stem cells in fat
2) Prolotherapy is not a direct source of stem cells. In directly, there is a minimal stem cell response to such therapy.
3) There is a paucity of active bone marrow outside of the pelvis and ribs in an adult; therefore, using a source other than the pelvis for aspirating bone marrow is bound to fail
4) While concentrated adult mesenchymal stem cells may not cause a measureable increase in cartilage joint space 18 months post intervention when repeating the MRI, Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate will alter the arthritic process, minimize the discomfort from arthritis, improve joint function and positively affect the quality of life
5) Any and all invasive measures related to Regenerative Medicine should includeadvanced imaging methodology
Between now and Christmas, I have 15 stem cell procedures scheduled with patients coming from all over North America. The more patients limited by arthritis learn about the benefits of Cellular Orthopedics, the more those patients are taking advantage of these opportunities. If you are not satisfied after an initial intervention, you may return for that booster. The next effort at Regenexx is to document the improved percentage outcome following a repeat procedure. Kobe Bryant who underwent a Regenerative Medicine procedure for his arthritic knee two to three years ago followed by record setting point production just underwent a second such procedure (booster) last month. He is returning to play this month and signed a two-year contract extension for 56 million dollars. Disclaimer: I am not guaranteeing my patients financial reward after a booster.