The current marketing of amniotic fluid as a regenerative approach to arthritis based on delivery of
viable stem cells falls is no different than the bending of the truth behavior we recently experienced
in the run up to the presidential election. Did the campaigns of the candidates reinforce some
notion that facts don’t necessarily matter? It seems that every office session, a patient shares with
me their having accepted a free lunch in exchange for the promise that for $7,000 to $9,000,
Amniotic Fluid containing living stem cells may be injected into an arthritic joint to regenerate that
During my entire 40-year plus orthopedic surgical and now regenerative medicine career, I never
accepted a free lunch from the army of pharmaceutical and orthopedic sales personnel who show
up daily as these gifts are contrary to corporate compliance requirements; and obligate me to listen
to sales pitches, Medical decisions must be based on evidence based medicine. At this time, there is
no scientific evidence of living stem cells in amniotic fluid once that fluid has been harvested,
sterilized, fast frozen for storage and fast thawed when used.
Before going any further, I will make it clear that, when indicated, I use amniotic fluid in my practice; but I also will make it clear, not as a source of stem cells or regeneration. Amniotic Fluid contains 15
times more hyaluronic acid than any available drug; hyaluronic acid is marketed under many trade
names starting with SynVisc. When I believe a patient with an arthritic joint might benefit from
hyaluronic acid, the best methodology is amniotic fluid. As well, the latter may contain viable
growth factors that play a role in controlling the limitations imposed by arthritis. At issue is the
question as to whether it is worth $7,000 to $9,000 for “generic” hyaluronic acid; when in fact, in a
proprietary form is covered by health insurance and Medicare?
There is another alternative if you are interested in Amniotic Fluid as a source of Hyaluronic Acid
and Growth Factors for which there is no charge to you if you meet the clinical trial inclusion
criteria. I am the principal investigator in a national amniotic fluid clinical trial underwritten by a
large pharmaceutical company that started working with amniotic fluid in 2006. Their focus now is
the use of amniotic fluid in the arthritic knee and determining dose and the duration of efficacy.
Facts do matter and the company is willing to underwrite the costs for gathering medical evidence.
To learn if you meet inclusion criteria, make an appointment at 312 475 1893