Stemcelldoc's Weblog

January 26, 2012

Ortho Stem Cell Treatments: The Importance of Delivery

Stem cell therapy is a alternative to traditional orthopedic knee surgery.  Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) can differentiate into cartilage, bone, tendon, ligament and disc.  Studies have demonstrated that the use of cultured expanded mesenchymal stem cells are both safe and effective in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis.

Does it matter how the stem cells are delivered to a targeted area?

In the case of soft tissue this is not a concern since the surrounding tissue will confine the spread of the stem cells to the targeted area.

In the case of a joint such as the knee the delivery of cells  is of critical significance. The key is that stem cell function through local attachment to the damaged site.  Animal studies have demonstrated that cells injected into a large joint often times have difficulty finding their way to the damaged area.

The key is delivering  stem cells directly into the damaged site.  Koga demonstrated this by comparing the results of blindly injecting stem cells into a joint vs dripping the cells directly into the damaged area.  The illustration below tells the story.  A defect in the cartilage was created and different methods of delivery were examined.  On the left there was minimal cartilage growth after the injection of saline.  In the middle there was minimal cartilage growth after blindly injecting stem cells into the joint. On the right where cells were injected directly into the area of damaged there was robust cartilage growth.  The new cartilage is purple in color.

Bottom Line:  The exact placement of stem cells within a joint is of critical importance.

At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic we utitlize x-ray and MSK ultrasound to guide bone marrow and platetlet derived stem cells into the  area of damaged tissue to maximize clinical outcomes.

October 9, 2011

Complications Associated with Knee Replacement

Knee replacement is increasing in frequency as means of treating symptomatic degenerative changes.

Over the last 10 years the number of partial and total knee replacements among patients 65 years and older has increased 100% ( 178,653 in 2008 to 357,472 in 2008).

Based on upon these numbers one would assume that knee replacements are safe and without  significant complication.

Unfortunately that is not the case.

Mohomed identified the following complications in patients who underwent knee replacement in 2000.

4670 cases of pneumonia

2788 pulmonary emboli.  blood clots

2908 heart attacks


Previous blogs have discussed complications associated with knee replacement surgery including wear particles, MOM and death.

Stem cell therapy is an alternative to traditional  knee orthopedic surgery.  In a peer-reviewed publication,  202 patients underwent stem cell treatment with no serious complications.  Furthermore stem cell therapy is not associated with time-consuming physical therapy and significant restrictions which can cause muscle weakness and impaired range of motion.  Regenexx is  an advanced stem cell therapy utilizing a patient’s own stem cells to treat different orthopedic knee conditions.

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