Stem cell therapy is a regenerative medical procedure that harnesses the power of the body’s natural healing capacity. As a knee pain doctor like our friends at Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania can explain, stem cell therapy uses the body’s own unique and versatile stem cells to encourage whole-body healing. If you’re wondering how this cutting-edge treatment can help you, read on.
What are Stem Cells?
A stem cell is a unique kind of cell that can adapt into specialized cells. Each part of the body has its own individualized cell type and structure. For instance, liver cells are only useful in the liver; brain cells are only needed in the brain, and so forth. However, stem cells have a significant difference. They can adapt and differentiate into different types of cells.
So, once injected into a certain are, a stem cell can become a liver cell, a brain cell, a knee cartilage cell, etc. No matter where they are injected into the body, they will adapt and divide, supplying a source of healthy cells to that specific area of the body. Injecting stem cells into a particular part of the body can help to rebuild and regenerate damaged tissue. Stem cells continuously divide, so a single injection can bring ongoing benefits.
Where Do Stem Cells Come From?
Pluripotent stem cells are “master” cells. They have the potential to produce any cell or tissue the body needs to repair and regenerate. They are typically extracted from embryos and fetal tissues. However, due to ethical concerns, most stem cell doctors use adult stem cells, which are usually found in the bone marrow and adipose (fat) tissue.
Adult stem cells are extracted from primarily two areas. They can be taken from the bone marrow in the hip area. They can also be obtained from the abdomen. Bone marrow extraction of stem cells usually yields fewer cells than those gathered through abdominal liposuction.
What Conditions Do Stem Cells Have the Potential to Treat?
Due to its versatility, stem cell therapy can be useful for treating a broad range of health issues, including:
- Joint damage
- Damaged cartilage
- Bone damage
- Spinal cord injury
- Autoimmune disorders
- Torn ligaments and muscles
- And more
How Does Stem Cell Therapy Help Arthritic Patients?
Arthritis is a disease that many people suffer from. Some people only suffer mild pain and discomfort, while others may have issues with mobility and sustaining their active lifestyles. Many who experience more severe forms of arthritis may have to alter their work schedules or refrain from their home and leisure activities.
Numerous forms of conventional treatment options are available for arthritic patients. Anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroid shots, physical therapy, and painkillers—all of these may still lead a patient to joint replacement. However, stem cell therapy is a viable option for many of these patients. It can actually serve to help them avoid major surgical procedures.
If you are suffering from arthritis or another issue that could respond favorably to stem cells, you owe it to yourself and your aging body to use stem cell therapy to regenerate tissue, rather than replace it with an artificial implant. To find out more, contact a knee pain doctor in your local area for a consultation.
BY: Mid Atlantic Spinal Rehab
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