There has been a lot of research conducted concerning the benefits of stem cell therapy during the last couple decades. This type of therapy can provide individuals with relief from injuries that are difficult to heal, as well as relief from chronic pain. There is no need for reconstructive surgery or medication. Researchers are also discovering ways to use stem cells to treat chronic conditions including diabetes, neuro-degenerative diseases, and heart disease. The most common benefit is prolotherapy or the management of pain. The cells are injected around damaged and painful joints, nerves, and muscle tissue.
The most commonly treated conditions include cardiovascular diseases, Achilles tendon injuries, rotator cuff injuries, tennis elbow, osteoarthritis, ACL injuries, tendonitis, and knee pain. The prolotherapy treatment options have significantly increased such as treating the pain associated with tendon and back injuries. Stem cell therapy is an option using the stem cells from umbilical cords to repair injuries and damaged tissues. This simple procedure is performed on an outpatient basis.
The Benefits of Stem Cell Therapy
• Increasing the rate of healing for wounds and injuries
• Increasing collagen production
• Decreasing nerve damage
• Decreasing chronic joint and generalized pain
• Decreasing hair loss and scar tissue
• Increasing the flexibility, range of motion, and functionality of certain joints
Stem cells assist with regrowth and are being used for the treatment of numerous conditions including:
• Muscukoskeletal issues and orthopedic injuries
• Spinal stenosis, brain trauma, and spinal cord injuries
• Hair loss
• Incisions and wounds after surgery
• Cardiovascular diseases
• Pancreatic dysfunctions
• Vision impairment
• Neurodegenerative diseases
After injection, the stem cells immediately start building new connective tissue and skin cells. There are numerous reasons these cells are so powerful. They can transform to become the type of cell required for repair.
They can also divide to become a specialized cell type including a brain cell, heart cell, red blood cell, etc. They have natural growth factors to increase the natural response of the body for healing and decrease pain without medications. The cells reproduce fast and continue dividing after being inactive. This means benefits are achieved within a short time frame. The majority of individuals require treatments for one week to three months depending on the condition being treated. In most cases, the individual begins to see a decrease in pain, better functionality, and an improvement in mobility in one or two treatments.
The Multiple Uses of Stem Cell Therapy
Cardiovascular diseases cause the formation of scar tissue, deprives the heart of oxygen, and changes blood pressure and flow. Stem cells taken from an umbilical cord can transform into the cells required to repair blood vessels and the heart. In addition to further research into the capabilities of these cells, they are being used to:
• Repair and maintain the growth of the tissue in blood vessels
• Decrease scar tissue formation and restore blood pressure and flow
• Improve new capillary formation
• Grow new heart tissue through the generation of muscle cells
• Help prevent cardiac cells from overstretching
Despite additional research being necessary, the cells used to treat heart disease include cardiac cells, embryonic cells, umbilical cord blood cells, muscle stem cells, bone marrow cells, endothelial progenitor cells and mesenchymal cells. Studies show these cells improve collagen production, healthy new skin tissue growth, replace scar tissue and stimulate the growth of new hair. The increased collagen helps wounds heal, and tightens and strengthens damaged areas. The same principle is relevant for the loss of cartilage due to overuse or osteoarthritis. Stem cell therapy is progressing for treating stroke, Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s disease. This is accomplished with a transplant of stem cells to form new synapses, neurons and brain cells after a brain injury.
Research has determined these cells can benefit functional recovery, slow down the progression of diseases, provide relief for degenerative symptoms and improve the synaptic circuits. Grafts and injections are used for neurodegeneration treatments to replace neurons, stop neuron destruction, stabilize dopamine release and help prevent involuntary movements. Inflammatory conditions and autoimmune disorders damage healthy cells and tissues. This is called immune rejection. Type 1 diabetes destroys cells in the pancreas responsible for insulin production. Thyroid disorders damage and attack the thyroid gland. Certain adult cells can produce the cells required to help reverse these conditions. This concept is currently being researched by scientists but the potential outcome is promising.
A clinical trial is researching the benefits pertaining to multiple sclerosis. After treating 110 participants for one year, only one relapse occurred within the group receiving stem cells as opposed to the 39 relapses in the participants being given traditional drugs. Three years later, there was a six percent failure in the participants receiving stem cell transplants. The participants receiving drugs experience a failure of 60 percent. This therapy is not effective for every case of multiple sclerosis.The immune system must first be destroyed with chemotherapy. The cells can then be taken from the bone marrow and infused into the bloodstream of the individual. The cells rebuild the immune system. This is expected to be an excellent treatment for the future.
The injections used for prolotherapy cause needle micro-trauma and irritation in the targeted area to trigger the repair process. Stem cell therapy uses natural growth factors resulting in a more powerful and faster process. Although the majority of treatments use more of the growth factors from the body as opposed to stem cells, the advanced treatments use a greater concentration of the cells. The cells are isolated, then grown by a biologist in a lab culture for approximately two-weeks. The cells are then mature and can be used for injections. Mesenchymal cells are appropriate and beneficial for the treatment of degenerative diseases with bulging discs, torn fibers and lost tissue. These treatments are effective for chronic pain and osteoarthritis because they trigger the healing process.
Physicians and researchers have relied primarily on two types of cells taken from both humans and animals. These are often derived from embryos. These are referred to as adult or somatic cells. An important discovery was made during the 1990’s. Cells derived from human embryos could be used for reproductive purposes when grown in a lab. Another breakthrough followed in 2006. Specific adult cells could be used to treat damaged tissue after being reprogrammed. These are called pluripotent cells. Scientists and researchers are investigating transforming these cells into the specialized cells required. The key research goals for the future include:
• Understanding how undifferentiated cells transform into differentiated cells necessary for the formation of organs and tissues.
• Understanding how human genes are turned off and on by stem cells
• Understanding how to control cell differentiation and proliferation.
• Discovering additional uses for these cells for serious medical conditions including birth defects and cancer.
The hope for the future is stem cells will become an appropriate source for replacing both tissue and cells. This would be an excellent treatment for both serious and common diseases without the necessity for surgeries or organ transplants. This would include cancer, osteoarthritis, heart disease, stroke, macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, burns and spinal cord injuries. One of the most important areas currently being researched are cancer treatments. The most recent studies have determined this type of cell is well tolerated and safe for individuals with numerous types of cancer, including chronic and acute leukemia, multiple myeloma and lymphoma. More and more physicians are offering treatments using stem cells. This includes anesthesiologists, orthopedics and pain management practices.
The type of medical physician is determined by the specific treatment required. This includes both cardiologists and neurologists. This type of treatment is most commonly offered by a practice of physicians specializing in the diagnosis, correction and prevention of connective tissue, neurological and musculoskeletal tissue injuries and disorders. The majority of these physicians are board-certified, highly experienced and skilled in all of the above areas. They generally offer advanced stem cell treatments and applications. Numerous physicians are now tracking the progress of their patients and publishing their findings on their websites. This provides detailed information on the exact improvements achieved by providing stem cell therapy procedures. This is extremely helpful for any individual considering this type of treatment.
The treatments include injuries to the rotator cuff or shoulder, pain in the foot or ankle, injuries to the hand or wrist, pain in the knee, hip dysfunction, arthritis and knee meniscus. The treatments follow the same general procedure at the majority of providers. The process generally begins at the office of the physician and not at a hospital. The individual has a consultation with the physician to discuss their specific needs.
Once the cells have been concentrated, they are injected into the part of the body containing the damaged tissues. In the majority of cases, the individual is able to return to their home shortly after the treatment has been completed. The procedure is not considered to be painful. It is important to note the results of the therapy will vary from patient to patient. This is true of even the most well established medical practices, treatments and therapies. It is important to understand additional injections may be necessary to achieve the best possible and most significant improvements. This type of therapy is considered to be extremely safe when provided by a qualified medical professional.
Stem cell therapy has become fairly common for treating immune rejection disorders, heart disease, neurological issues, damage to the connective tissues, orthopedic injuries, and more. The benefits of this type of treatment include decreasing the time required for healing, decreasing the need for numerous types of medication, decreasing chronic pain, improving the concentration of collagen, decreasing damage to the nerves and improving functionality. If you are interested in learning more or receiving stem cell therapy, feel free to reach out to the professionals at Metabolix Wellness Center. Our professionals at our office in Clearwater, FL would be more than happy to provide you with more information on exactly the type of stem cell therapy we offer as well as which conditions can be treated. Contact us today to schedule your consultation!