About Stem Cell Therapy
Stem cell therapy may sound new, however, this type of therapy has been around for years. These cells were challenging and expensive to acquire in the past. Nowadays, stem cells are obtained by a quick procedure with advanced techniques and innovative equipment. Stem cells that are injected at the site of injury help repair movement, flexibility and also help to reduce pain.
There are various types of stem cells. Hematopoietic are the most common type of stem cells. A mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) is related with tissue repair. These cells move through the blood stream to the point of injury. An area of hypoxia or low oxygen occurs if there is a poor or low blood supply around the injured area. There are many reasons for hypoxia such as injuries of the joints, tendons, and meniscus tissue.
Areas of hypoxia do not usually heal well by themselves because the body is unable to produce enough repair cells to these injured areas. The body has a hard time deciphering if there is an injury to a specific area due to having a low blood supply. Symptoms of hypoxia include headaches, fatigue, shortness of breath, nausea, palpitations, confusion, memory loss, and raised blood pressure.
Platelet rich plasma can be used to treat an injured area if the damage is not severe. It works because it imitates the blood supply in the platelets that sense the injury. First, it detects the injury. Once the injury is detected, it releases growth factor which then gives the body a signal to send stem cells to repair this part of the body.
Where do Stem Cells Come From?
Hematopoietic stem cells are stem cells that are found in blood and bone marrow. They produce white and red blood cells. We utilize them in a process called plasticity. Plasticity is when one type of stem cell turns into another type of stem cell. Different types of stems cells are important in helping to repair the body. For example, a stem cell that produces blood cells can change to a stem cell that produces tissue.
Mesenchymal stem cells are a very important type of stem cell that we utilize in our stem cell procedures. Mesenchymal stem cells are found in many places. For example, you can find them in bone marrow, circulating through blood, and in fat cells. These stem cells are the most crucial for our orthopedic procedures. We use these stem cells to repair and replace damaged tissue.
As we age, the number of mesenchymal stem cells fade in the bone marrow which is one of the major causes for aging. Fortunately, the amount of fat mesenchymal stem cells and hematopoietic stem cells stays relatively constant. Protein rich plasma (PRP) helps stem cells to increase in both quantity and function.
Why are Fat Cells Used?
We utilize mesenchymal fat cells to increase the number of bone marrow originated from mesenchymal stem cells. We obtain these fat cells in the office with a procedure that is performed under local anesthesia.
There are only a few centers in the United States that are currently using mesenchymal stem cells developed from fat cells. Dr. Gershon has performed over 100 minimally invasive liposuction procedures. Plastic surgeons have taught us that using fat cells in surgery may result in the fat cells being transferred to the tissue that surrounds them.
The platelets release growth factors as well as signaling proteins that communicates with the stem cells on what to become after they are introduced back into the body. Stem cells cannot repair the area by themselves. The platelets act as directors which direct the stem cells. Stem cells are capable of many things once they are activated. For example, they urge damaged cells to repair themselves and play a role in the repair process.
What Should You Expect During Stem Cell Therapy?
There are many things to expect during Stem Cell Therapy. First, keep in mind that Stem Cell Therapy is a process that can take weeks to months from start to finish. The whole process usually takes between 2 to 3 months. However, you will start to see results before then. A platelet rich plasma injection is also performed on the injured area approximately 4 to 6 weeks after the stem cell injection. A second injection can be done 4 to 6 weeks later if needed. The platelet injections are effective because they permit the stem cells to grow and multiply into cartilage tissue.
PRP is another part of our stem cell treatment. Stem cells injected into an area by themselves will remain relatively quiet. The stem cells need PRP to function because PRP directly affects them by contributing growth factors and stimulating proteins. These signaling factors tell the body to send stem cells to the injured area and causes the stem cells to reproduce and begin repairing at the same time. Conditions that are less severe can be treated with PRP injections. PRP and mesenchymal fat stem cells may both be needed for conditions that are moderately severe.
How is The Aspen Institute different from other facilities?
There are many ways to differentiate between The Aspen Institute and other facilities performing stem call and PRP injections. First, we have a seasoned board certified sports medical physician on our team. Second, we offer an alternative to surgery with the use of platelet rich plasma (PRP) and stem cells.
Our methods may be simple but they are also cutting edge. There are many practices outside of the United States that use embryonic stem cells. There are problems and complications with using the embryonic stem cells. Also, the FDA has issued significant restrictions on using these cells in humans.
We still have a long way to go in order to use these cells safely and consistently. Due to advances and present technology, we have found that embryonic stem cells are not the cure to many orthopedic problems.
The video at the top of the page shows how Hormone and Stem cell therapy has improved conditions in our patients.
Dr. Gershon along with his staff have seen great success with their patients in treating many areas. These areas include osteoarthritis, erectile dysfunction fibromyalgia, COPD, multiple sclerosis, diabetes.
Call today to schedule your free consultation with Dr. Gershon and learn if Stem Cell Therapy is good fit for you.