It has been cold, dark, and dreary for the past several weeks here in Chicago so I needed a change of scene. Too cold to enjoy the 12 to16 inches of snow accumulation over the holidays and then a sudden warm up with rain removing any chance of outdoor recreation. As an aging athlete, I was left with only one choice; so good cheer and greetings from Vail, Colorado, where I am spending the week skiing with my wife. Our stem cells are enjoying the rocky mountain high.
All year long, I attend to the aging athlete and the inherent musculoskeletal wear and tear. While the majority of my professional life had been dedicated to joint replacement for advanced arthritis, over the last several years, the goal has been to delay or possibly eliminate the need for a joint replacement with Regenerative Stem Cell intervention. Let me share with you what I have learned and observed as a result of my professional redirection; the advances based on stem cell focused regenerative medicine are a very significant contribution to the musculoskeletal care of the aging athlete. I am empowered to make the argument based on my patient responses and the data documented in our outcomes surveillance. What is so exciting to see first hand is the number of master skiers still excited about the sport. As it is after school vacation, the majority of skiers this week approach master athlete status; so much so that there no longer is a senior discount for the lift ticket. So what’s the magic in the care of the aging athlete?
First and foremost, be as thin as possible and still maintain good health. The reward will be a marked diminution in a propensity toward metabolic syndrome (hypertension and diabetes). If you don’t have the problems, you won’t need to medicate; less is better. While your genetics plays a role, the pursuit of fitness will make a difference. Where I am constantly reminded of the adverse consequences of anti-inflammatories, statins and the like, is when I harvest bone marrow and count nucleated cells for a mesenchymal stem cell intervention. The less prescription pharmaceuticals needed by a patient, the higher the nucleated cell count at the time of bone marrow aspiration and concentration. The number of my patients with knee and hip arthritis who are and will be enjoying the ski slopes this winter is significant; many who have been forced to forego the sport in recent years because of symptomatic hips and knees. If you want to ski again, return to a sport or for that matter, be pain free and avoid or postpone a joint replacement for arthritis; give it a though and give us a call for a consultation. 847 390 7666