Promote Healing With a Stem Cell Transplant

Stem cell transplantation is an exciting therapy that utilizes a patient's adipose (fat) derived stem cells (ADSC) combined with Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) to provide a potent biological and therapeutic combination.

Stem cells are abundant in adipose tissue, and contain 100 to 1000 times the concentration of stem cells found in bone marrow. Adipose derived stem cells provide a living bioscaffold and a multipotent cell replenishment source (meaning they are capable of differentiating into many different cell types) useful for enhanced musculoskeletal healing.

Stem cells are capable of differentiating into bone, cartilage, tendon, ligament and muscle. Combined with platelet rich plasma, which contains growth factors and cytokines that stimulate the stem cells, the management of various musculoskeletal conditions, including osteoarthritis and chronic soft tissue tears and degeneration, has taken a big step forward. Furthermore, use of stem cells and platelet rich plasma together is the first nonsurgical attempt to try to stimulate cartilage growth in osteoarthritic knees.

How Are the Stem Cells Harvested For Transplantation?

Stem cells are harvested from the subcutaneous fat of the abdomen, flank, buttock or thighs. This is simple procedure uses local anaesthetic, and usually only a small amount of fat (30 cc) is actually needed. It is an outpatient procedure done in office.

Once harvested, your fat, containing millions of stem cells (seeds), is immediately combined with your PRP (fertilizer), and injected into the appropriate area. Ultrasound guidance is often used to ensure accuracy of needle placement. Average procedure time is about an hour from start to finish.

Are There Any Risks to a Stem Cell Transplant?

Some local discomfort and bruising at both the fat harvesting site and the injection site are normal, and can last up to 12 weeks. As with any procedure that penetrates the skin, there is a low risk of infection.

The usual risks of liposuction, resulting from large amounts of fat being removed do not apply, based on the small quantity actually being harvested. Furthermore, as local anaesthetic is used, the risks that accompany general anaesthesia and/or IV sedation do not apply. Read this article for more information on the risks of liposuction.

How Long Does it Take to See Results After a Stem Cell Transplant?

A patient will often see and feel result within weeks, once the post injection discomfort passes. However the full effects may take several months to manifest.

Are you considering a stem cell transplant as an option to treat an injury or condition such as osteoarthritis? Contact SEMI to consult with a highly trained and qualified professional who can help you determine the best course of action for your condition.

Is There Any Science on This Topic?

For an up to date reference list please go to www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed, which is the US National Library of Congress website devoted entirely to published research on a multitude of topics. In the search window enter 'adipose derived stem cells AND...'. After the word AND, enter the topic you are interested in, such as 'Adipose Derived Stem Cells AND Osteoarthritis of the Knee'. This will return the currently published list of articles for your review.

For an up to date listing of international research projects on this topic currently underway, but not yet completed, please go to www.clinicaltrials.gov. Again, in the search window, enter the same search string, and you will be given an up to date list of all such research projects.

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Sports & Exercise Medicine Institute

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