Stem cell therapy has the ability to restore damaged or aging tissues using adult stem cells that promote regeneration and healing of injured muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joints.
Naturally occurring ‘stem cells’ maintain the unique ability to self-replicate indefinitely, i.e., into adult ages. Throughout your lifetime, your body relies on adult stem cells that divide and produce new tissues to replace old and damaged tissues.
One group of adult stem cells, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are used for stem cell therapy because they replicate to produce several types musculoskeletal tissues.
What is stem cell therapy?
Stem cell therapy consists of an injection containing a concentrated amount of MSCs. When MSCs are injected directly into injured and diseased musculoskeletal tissues, they promote healing.
Stem cells have the ability to:
- Develop into bone, muscle, cartilage, fat, and other connective tissues
- Reduce inflammation
- Promote cell growth and fight cell death
- Stimulate the growth of new blood vessels
- Secrete proteins that promote tissue growth
- Limit activation of harmful immune cells
Musculoskeletal conditions that may benefit from MSC therapy:
- Osteoarthritis of any joint
- Injured muscles, tendons, and ligaments
- Rheumatological conditions
How are mesenchymal stem cells harvested?
One source of stem cells are obtained from your bone marrow, typically in your hip area, because it’s a rich source of MSCs. You’ll receive intravenous light sedation, as well as local anesthesia injected into the targeted area of your hip. Bone marrow cells are obtained using a needle, then processed in a centrifuge that separates MSCs from other cells in the sample. The concentrated MSCs are used for your stem cell injection.
An alternative source to obtain stem cells is Adipose-Derived Stem Cell Therapy. Again, this technique can help a wide range of orthopedic injuries and degenerative conditions, including arthritis. Adult stem cells are harvested from your own adipose tissue. Unlike embryonic stem cells, adult stem cells are approved by the FDA for research and treatment of a wide variety of conditions. Adult adipose tissue is the most abundant source of stem cells in the human body and has shown great promise in the treatment of a host of conditions.