Special Announcement - Now Enrolling for FDA Approved Stem Cell Study
Dr. Mitchell Sheinkop has completed training and is credentialed for the first of its kind FDA approved stem cell clinical trial for knee arthritis. Our clinic is now enrolling patients in this trial. Contact us at 312-767-5761 for details. Click here to learn more.

Must yesterday’s joint injury lead to tomorrow’s arthritis?  

My column regarding ACL ruptures appeared last Friday. That afternoon, I received the following inquiry and comment from a reader, regarding the prognosis and possible early preventive interventions for a significant knee injury.

“I am one of relatively few patients who has had the Bone Marrow Concentrate treatment for a fully-torn (not-retracted) ACL tear and to date, I’ve had what I’d consider to be an amazing recovery.  I read your latest blog post and just thought I’d let you know that I’m back to very aggressive skiing (including small but non-trivial jumps).  However, I did want to ask, if you would be willing to comment, if there are actions or periodic diagnostics, you’d recommend to maximize the chances that I’m still happy skiing 10,20,30 years after the injury?  I understand you probably can’t comment but nevertheless wanted to let you know I was also a real-life person who had a significant knee trauma with multiple surgical consults all agreeing it was fully torn and required surgery (to return to high-level skiing) and now have a fairly normal looking ACL in MRI (per independent radiologist) and am back to 100% with activities that require a lot of knee stability.  I did do two rounds of same-day BMA reinjections and a bunch of platelet injections but no surgery.”

The answer is an orthopedic assessment at three-year intervals to look for markers of post traumatic osteoarthritis such as loss of terminal extension and asymmetrical flexion. The MRI is helpful in detecting moderate arthritic changes but the latest development, the needle scope, allows an orthopedic surgeon to directly examine the meniscus and cartilage in an office setting. The concern is post traumatic arthritis, cartilage defects that will progress, and meniscal damage not always seen on the MRI. Here are some thoughts on early intervention with Cellular Orthopedic and Regenerative Medicine options.

A recent Study Compared the Efficiency of Needle Arthroscopy Versus MRI for Meniscal Tears and Cartilage damage. Needle arthroscopy (NA) may be a less costly and more accurate option for diagnosis and treatment of meniscal tears and early onset post traumatic arthritis than MRI, according to a study published in the February issue of Arthroscopy. Researchers collected data on costs for care and accuracy, including procedures for both false-positive and false-negative findings well as private payer reimbursement rates. They compared outcomes using the global knee injury and osteoarthritis outcome score (KOOS). Patients were followed and evaluated over a two-year period. 

There are several restorative options now available when conservative therapies for the treatment of knee degenerative processes, such as non-pharmacological interventions, systemic drug treatment, and intra-articular therapies offer only short-term benefits or fail. Before resorting to surgery; be aware that encouraging preliminary results have been reported using mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), either alone or in association with surgery. My clinical published research documents success with using your Bone Marrow Concentrate for joint restoration and combating progression of posttraumatic arthritis. Additionally, I have published an article concerning another source for joint restoration, micro-fractured adipose tissue. The latter has created a huge interest in the context of cartilage regeneration due to its wide availability, ease to harvest and richness in mesenchymal cell elements within the so called stromal vascular fraction. Moreover, MSCs from adipose tissue are characterized by marked anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties, which make them an excellent tool for regenerative medicine purposes.

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Superbowl Winner Emerges; Eight-Month Long Physical Demolition Derby Comes to an End

Superbowl Winner Emerges; Eight-Month Long Physical Demolition Derby Comes to an End

On Monday, the annual migration for attempts at the physical Restoration and Regeneration of the NFL players injured bodies began. While in the past, the losers would chant “wait ‘til next year”; very soon, the NFL winners and losers alike will take flight to Orthopedic Surgeons around the USA and world, on occasion, some will even find their way to my office, seeking both operative and non-operative repair of the injuries incurred over the last eight months. What I will offer is Regenerative and Restorative initiatives using either the patient’s bone marrow, circulating blood or body fat. While I use a needle and not a knife in my practice, at times it takes arthroscopy and open surgical procedures to assist the athlete in returning to play or extending a career.  The fall NFL 2019 schedule is already on line; there is a sense of urgency. These attempts at restoring and regenerating anatomic and physical well-being are not limited to the professional football player. To the best of my recollection, it was Tiger Woods in 2008, who brought regenerative medicine to the attention of the American public. When in 2011, Kobe Bryant traveled to Dusseldorf, Germany for a highly publicized orthobiologic treatment of his arthritic knee, returning to play for another six seasons, he was soon after followed by the professional golfer Fred Couples, baseball player Alex Rodriguez, and NFL star Payton Manning. All returned to their respective sport and extended playing careers; many more have followed. Now Cellular Orthopedics, Regenerative Medicine and Joint Restoration are available around our country as well as at my office for professional, college, high school, amateur athletes and fitness enthusiasts of any age.  

Orthobiologics and Cellular Orthopedics are a dynamic approach to body injury and arthritis using the individual’s own (autologous) platelets, molecules and proteins circulating in the blood (Cytokines and Growth factors), adipose tissue, or bone marrow to effect healing and eliminate pain. At this time, it is FDA Compliant to use such in the care and treatment of injury and arthritis as long as that which is to be used has been harvested from the patient herself or himself, not cultured or expanded, and not treated with additional agents. The successes are no longer merely anecdotal; there is an ever-increasing body of scientific evidence to validate the emerging discipline of Cellular Orthopedics. For instance, in my office, I integrate patient care with documenting outcomes and that has led to several recent scientific publications contributing to an evidence-based orthobiologics practice. You may find those publications and more at my web site  www.sheinkopmd.com.  To schedule a consultation call (847) 390-7666.

There is a way of still being an athlete and significantly reducing your risk of injury, take up esports. Marquette University is adding varsity esports, a competitive video gaming team in the fall of 2019. The team will have tryouts, coaches and regular practices just like any intercollegiate sport

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Cartilage Regeneration versus Joint Restoration, what’s the difference?

Cartilage Regeneration versus Joint Restoration, what’s the difference?

I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, so help me G_d. Injured cartilage in a skeletally mature adult typically doesn’t heal on its own; surgical techniques are needed in an attempt to repair and replace cartilage. These latter procedures are appropriate for specific cartilage injury, rather than the widespread cartilage changes found in the osteoarthritic joint. That is not to say that someday soon, we may have the ability to regenerate cartilage. Research is ongoing in regenerative medicine with continual progress as evidenced by preliminary success in spinal cord injured patients:  

StemCyte gets FDA green light to continue studying spinal cord injury treatment stem cells.  

Now for the bad news. In spite of false news generated by the charlatans, parasites, camp followers and hucksters in their Regenerative Medicine seminars, print media and television adds; there is no scientific evidence to support their claims of cartilage regeneration, hair restoration, cure of erectile dysfunction, so on and so forth.

Stem cell fraud? Couple says therapy gave them ‘false hope’

“Unfortunately, what I had hoped to be a hard-hitting expose turned into limp-noodle babbling. Another missed opportunity.” Continuing the commentary about regenerative medicine clinic charlatans and fraud started by NBC, when a patient showed me a brochure from yet another group that holds itself out to treat every abnormal medical condition from A to Z with “Stem Cells”, I suggested that he request data regarding their successes. Please bear in mind the self- contradicting adage that Always and Never statements are always false and never true. They are frequently used by people who suffer from personality disorders.  On Friday he sent me the response to his inquiry regarding outcomes at a one of the national stem cell clinics.

“success rates per our clinical research network are VERY encouraging:  Orthopedic: knee 83%, hip 80%, back (cervical, thoracic, lumbar, sacral 80% ave., ED 77%, Cataracts 100%”  Remember what I just wrote about Always and Never?

The good news though is that there is emerging scientific evidence to justify Joint Restoration with a cellular orthopedic procedure. While an image of an arthritic joint allows for identification of cartilage and meniscal changes, that same image will frequently be consistent with bone marrow edema, and thickening of the bone adjacent to a joint (subchondral sclerosis) as well as loose bodies within the joint. As cartilage does not have a nerve supply, the pain generation in Osteoarthritis more probable than not is the result of inflammation of the synovial joint lining and the subchondral bone. While there is no scientific means of re-growing cartilage after age 40 at this time-defects may be filled by surgery-orthopedic surgeons focusing on Cellular Orthopedics have developed methods to restore the joint function by blocking the pain generators, restoring healthy subchondral bone, and reversing bone marrow edema.

To schedule an Evidence Based Consultation, call (847) 390-7666

You may read my Blog and explore my published research articles on the website www.sheinkopmd.com

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Chicken Soup for Arthritis or Micro-Fractured Adipose Tissue

Chicken Soup for Arthritis or Micro-Fractured Adipose Tissue

You may recall from my last several Blogs that The American Journal of Orthopedics published my paper in November: Safety and Efficacy of Micro-Fractured Adipose Tissue for Knee Arthritis. While surfing the internet this morning, I noted that many physicians are labeling the procedure a source of stem cells; it is not. 

Lipogems is now U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for use in Orthopedics. The proprietary name is applied to a Micro-fragmented Adipose Tissue Transplant System that was the technology I introduced and monitored in a scientific clinical trial dating back three years leading to the publication. Federal regulators have now cleared the way for the device and technology that uses a patient’s own body fat (known clinically as adipose tissue) to assist in the healing process. Lipogems is attractive to orthopedic physicians because it is compliant with the latest FDA guidelines and is cleared for use in orthopedics. Unfortunately, clinics and physicians are erroneously, describing the procedure as a source of stem cells; I will emphasize again it is not. Even the Lipogems company uses term reparative and not regenerative. 

The Power of Fat 

When I grew up, my grandmother and mother fed me chicken soup for whatever ailed me. Many patients are looking for another option to major invasive surgery. Fat has many important cells and is easy to get from the patient’s body. Micro fragmented adipose tissue may be an option for patients who have tried physical therapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or steroid injections, and other treatments that have not provided enough relief.

In November 2017, the FDA finalized its rules guiding the use of Human Cellular and Tissue Products.  The Agency reaffirmed that the Lipogems system meets the new guidelines’ criteria for minimal manipulation of the tissue, and that it is intended for homologous use. “Fat has been used for many years in support of the repair or replacement of damaged or injured tissue,” according to Dr. Arnold Caplan of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. “Fat has a high concentration of reparative cells and is a very powerful tissue. How the fat is processed makes a huge difference on the quality of the tissue and if it meets the new FDA guidelines.”

To schedule an evidence-based consultation for your arthritic joint, call (847) 390-7666.

You may access my website at  www.sheinkopmd.com

If you schedule before the end of the year, I will share my wife’s chicken soup recipe on request

 

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Cartilage Regeneration versus Joint Restoration, what’s the difference?

Patient Online Resources for Biologic Therapies

As interest in biologic therapies for arthritis-a needle, not a knife-continues to expand; patients increasingly are turning to the ads in newspapers or searching the Internet to gather information on this topic. While there is still a lack of scientific consensus on the use of biologics, it is most important for those seeking information not to be misled. My own analysis of resources for patients seeking on line information about biologic therapies for arthritis is that the overall quality is very poor and anything but scientific. Even worse, is a seminar, neither a reliable or credible source of scientific evidence.

Biologic therapies consist of stem cells, platelet rich plasma product and bone marrow aspirate concentrate. New research, I co-authored and that was published last month in The American Journal of Orthopedics:  Safety and Efficacy of Micro-Fractured Adipose Tissue for Knee Arthritis, is indicative of the ever-evolving nature of Regenerative Medicine. Biologic therapies and their use in arthritis or musculoskeletal injury in general are an area of vast research and interest within the medical field. Understanding the information online and the misinformation provided at seminars pertaining to biologics allows me to tailor my conversation and address commonly found inaccuracies.

The use of Biologic Therapies is expected to significantly increase in the coming years as our knowledge advances on the use of such. That initiative will be led by well informed, well-educated Board Certified, and Fellowship trained specialists. Unfortunately owing to the relative lack of oversite at present, every type of charlatan, parasite and camp follower can buy an ad for a seminar or produce a web site on the internet. How then should a patient with pain and limited function from arthritis seek to postpone or avoid surgery without becoming a victim of the cord blood or amniotic fluid hoax?

  1. Your physician must complete a comprehensive medical history, physical examination and review of diagnostic studies.
  2. Explain the disease process and grade of progression,
  3. Discuss possible treatment options,
  4. Present a balanced assessment of the current scientific evidence.

Woe, while writing this Blog, I was just notified about acceptance of yet another scientific article by a peer reviewed medical journal in which I am the senior author: A Specific Protocol of Autologous Bone Marrow Concentrate and Platelet Products Versus Exercise Therapy for Symptomatic Knee Osteoarthritis; a Randomized Control Trial with 2 Year Follow-up.

Hopefully some time soon, a Biologic Arthroplasty will be possible; but until then, a Total Joint Replacement is still a necessary option for those not meeting specified inclusion criteria for biologics. To see what treatments may be possible for your arthritic generated pain call (847) 390-7666 to schedule a consultation. Visit my website www.SheinkopMD.com for additional information. 

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