Stem cell therapy is performed by injection and is designed to heal injuries, treat arthritis and other conditions, and reduce pain. This therapy uses your own stem cells—they work as a building block to mimic other types of cells. The stem cells work to regenerate damaged cells, which in turn reduces pain. Let’s look into why stem cell therapy might be right for you.
How does stem cell therapy work?
Our bodies produce a variety of cell types, but not every cell starts out fully formed and ready to use. Stem cells start out as an undifferentiated blank slate and later become a specific type of cell. Stem cells divide, and the new cells can become a stem cell or a specialized cell (such as a muscle cell, a brain cell, or a blood cell).
You’ve probably heard about controversy surrounding the use of embryonic stem cells. But today’s stem cell therapy techniques use stem cells taken from the patient. It’s quick and safe—it only involves gathering fat cells, also called adipose tissue—which have plentiful stem cells. Using a centrifuge, the adipose tissue is spun to separate the stem cells. The stem cells are injected into the injured part of the body to help repair the damage. Stem cell therapy can be used for many types of treatments throughout the body.
Stem cell therapy can help regenerate bones, speed up repairing tendons and ligaments, increase range of motion, and reduce inflammation. This type of therapy is commonly used for shoulder, knee, and hip injuries to help patients recover more quickly; in fact, sports medicine uses stem cell therapy to treat athletes’ injuries. Stem cell therapy can also ease joint stiffness and pain in patients with osteoarthritis.
The symptoms and causes of many diseases can be successfully treated with stem cell therapy. Below we list just a few conditions where stem cell therapy can help:
- Cardiopulmonary and Cardiology: The stem cells can accelerate soft tissue healing, helping to repair blood vessels and promote growth of epithelial tissue.
- Eye issues: stem cells can repair damaged blood vessels when there’s abnormal bleeding in the retina. It can also regenerate cells damaged by macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss.
- Alzheimer’s Disease: Alzheimer’s patients can benefit from regenerating and rejuvenating brain cells.
- Lupus: Stem cell therapy may be able to help patients with this chronic autoimmune disease.
- Spinal Cord Injury (SCI): Decrease inflammation and decompress damaged spinal cells by regenerating the nerve cells the patient needs.
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS): There’s currently no cure for MS; however, stem cells can help regenerate affected nerves.
- Graves’ Disease: Stem cells can help the thyroid attain a more normal state of function.
- COPD: These degenerative diseases make it difficult to breathe. Stem cells help regenerate airway structures, allowing increased air flow.
- Stroke Damage: New, healthy cells can eventually diminish some of the effects of a stroke, and stem cell therapy can regenerate new, healthy brain cells.
Stem cells have the potential to generate new cells to replace depleted and damaged cells throughout the body, including skin and hair tissue. Stem cell therapy can rejuvenate the appearance of a patient’s skin to a more youthful look and feel. And stem cells can also help revive hair growth, which could help patients with alopecia grow new hair. If you think stem cell therapy might be right for you, give our office a call. We’d be happy to explore your options together.