Stemcelldoc's Weblog

January 21, 2009

Ligament injuries to the elbow

Ligaments are fibrous tissue that connects one bone to another.

There are two ligaments that stabilize  the elbow joint: the ulnar collateral ligament and the radial collateral ligament.

The ulnar collateral ligament is fan shaped.  It is located on the inside of the joint, extending from medial epicondyle of the humerus to the proximal portion of the ulna. It prevents excessive outward rotation of the elbow joint.

elbow_ucl_injury_anatomy02

The radial collateral ligament is also fan shaped. It is located on the outside of the joint, extending from the lateral epicondyle of the humerus to the head of the radius. It prevents excessive inward rotation of the elbow joint.

Surgical treatment options include ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction sometimes referred to as Tommy John surgerytommy-john-surgery

The surgery involves replacing the ulnar collateral ligament with a tendon that is obtained elsewhere in the body. Common sites include the forearm, knee and hamstring.

Alternatives to surgery include stem cell therapy for regeneration of torn elbow ligamentsRegenexx enables the patient to use their own stem cells to repair damaged or torn tendons and ligaments.

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January 19, 2009

Treatments for Shoulder Separation

Shoulder separation injurycommonly involves the acromioclavicular joint ( AC joint).   The AC joint is where the clavicle meets the highest point of the shoulder blade (acromion).  

ac-joint Three ligaments support the acromio-clavicular joint; the cocrocoacromial, corococlavicular (CC) and acromioclavicular ligaments(AC). Ligaments are soft tissue structures that connect bones to bones.

ac-joint-ligaments

Falls directly on the shoulder can injure the ligaments that stabilize the AC joint.

If the force is severe enough,  the AC ligament and or coracoclavicular (CC) ligaments can tear with resultant separation of the clavicle and acromion.   The result is a bump on the shoulder.

Treatment options include surgery if the pain continues or if the deformity is severe. Often the end of the collarbone is cut out so that it does not rub against the acromion along with reconstruction of the ligaments.

Other successful treatment options include prolotherapy and stem cell therapy to repair damaged ligaments and joints. At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic prolotherapy has been utilized extensively to strengthen loose or torn shoulder ligaments.  At Regenexx a patient’s own stem cells are use to repair torn ligaments and damaged joints.  Both therapies enable the patient to forgo the risks of surgery and the time, expense and pain of shoulder surgery rehabilitation.

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