Regenerative Medicine Offers Patients Effective Alternatives to Serious Surgeries
I can’t tell you how often I hear this from patients. The imagery scares people into thinking that their chronic and painful condition is unfixable; that they’ll suffer for a lifetime unless something drastic — like a knee replacement — is performed. The truth is, while there are some instances of joint degeneration where surgery is the only option, most physicians are simply unaware of newer, minimally invasive treatment options available. Their default treatments are limited to using anti-inflammatories, steroid injections, hyaluronic acid injections and ultimately surgery. Fortunately, the emerging field of regenerative medicine offers a far better and more effective alternative.
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and stem cells have recently been publicized as effective, innovative medical treatments. These cells are the oldest, safest and most natural healing agents. The field of regenerative medicine, which involves the harvesting and the precise delivery of stem cells and PRP, is based on our body’s own ability to heal itself. When you have a minor injury, you heal naturally. Your body sends regenerative cells to the injured area, which triggers the healing process. But this powerful phenomenon is limited to structures with blood flow. Unfortunately, connective tissue structures like tendons, ligaments, discs, meniscus, labrum and cartilage have very limited blood flow and therefore the inability to heal. For pain in those areas, the default medical treatment typically points to surgery.
Regenerative medicine therapies now allow physicians to isolate and selectively inject PRP or stem cells directly into these connective tissue areas, unleashing the body’s natural healing process. The growth factors in these regenerative cells have the potential to repair tissue damage and provide welcome pain relief. This effective, safe, all-natural alternative gives new hope to people with chronic conditions.