George Chung, from Los Angeles, enjoys skiing, which even at the age of fifty-five he was still attempting and successfully steep slopes for a long duration. In fact, he was able to keep up with competitors that were tens of years younger than him.
He was skiing one day when he noticed a sharp pain in both knee joints. He thought it would just go away after using a pain reliever. This pain persisted for over a week and didn’t subside. At this point, he decided to visit the hospital. It was diagnosed that he had “osteoarthritis” in his two knees. He was presented with options such as surgery and the relatively new investigative treatment
The investigative treatment is stem cell therapy. It’s when stem cells are injected into the affected area. He underwent this procedure, and he was able to return to his normal life; completely free of pains. In less than three years later, and after ten procedures, he was able to return his intensive and aggressive skiing. In addition to skiing, he also started cycling and went on to even win state awards. This is a success story of how stem cell therapy was used in treating a knee disease, with little or no side effects, and an outstanding result.
WHAT IS STEM CELL THERAPY
Stem cells could be multipotent or pluripotent. In other words, this means that they can differentiate into another type of cells, and also form daughter stem cells, just like them. Stem cells have some specific features, which makes them unique, and useful for the treatment of diseases. They are capable of self-renewal and can also regenerate. This is why they are used for the repair of damaged tissues, and also for the replacement of dead or diseased cells. Stem cells can be collected from different sources. Some require a complicated and long process, while some procedures are simple and quick to perform. The disease would dictate the kind of procedure that would be involved.
Where Are Stem Cells Gotten From?
Firstly, there are types of stem cell transplant
Autologous stem cell: Autologous stem cells are the stem cells that are gotten from a donor, preserved, then given back to the same donor. Autologous could sometimes be the best option, as long as the stem cells of the individual are healthy and also if the patient is healthy enough to undergo the extraction procedure. However, it’s best to use your stem cells, especially for the treatment of arthritis, or other knee related diseases.
Allogenic stem cell: Allogenic stem cell is when stem cells are extracted from a donor, preserved, then given to another person, often referred to as the recipient. It is important, especially when the stem cells of the recipient are diseased or when the recipient isn’t healthy enough to undergo the extraction procedure. However, the downside of allogeneic stem cell is that; there are might be cases of rejection, as compared to an autologous stem cell transplant, that is without rejections.
Where Are the Stem Cells Gotten From?
Stem cells can be from different sources. For example. They can be from the bloodstream, adipose tissues, bone marrow, and umbilical cords. Stem cells are capable of differentiating into other forms such as bone cells, cartilage cells, and even hematological cells like red blood, white blood, and platelet cells. However, the non-hematological cells are needed for knee treatment. The bone marrow has the highest quantity of stem cells. Although, some treatments can be administered to proliferate and disseminate these stem cells into the bloodstream so that they can be easily extracted from the bloodstream. Although, the procedure might have to be repeated more than once, to collect the sufficient amount of stem cells, needed for the procedure. The hip bones are the most suitable bones to extract stem cells. Several syringes are injected into the donor, so the maximum amount of stem cells can be collected at a time.
How Do the Stem Cells Work in Treating Knee Diseases?
Stem cells are cells that can differentiate into other cells. They are capable of developing into mesenchymal cells, bone and cartilage cells. In addition to this, stem cells can self-regenerate, repair damaged tissues and also replace diseased cells and tissues. This makes them useful in the treatment of knee joint diseases and also in stem cell knee repair.
What is Stem Cell Knee Therapy Used For?
It’s common practice now to use people’s stem cells to help treat joint diseases and to repair damaged knee joints. Diseases such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune diseases that affect the joints and also injuries associated with sports. Stem cell therapy is a good replacement for surgery. Instead of implanting artificial parts in the knee joint, stem cells can be injected, and the tissues would grow naturally without any form of degeneration.
Benefits of knee Stem Cell Therapy
1.The procedure is rapid and less complicated: Stem cell therapy doesn’t take much time to perform. It takes a few hours, and the patient can return to his/her normal life after full recovery. On the other hand, surgery is a complicated procedure and takes a large number of hours to complete.
- The cost of stem cell therapy is moderately cheap for its outcome: Stem cell therapy is the best treatment for knee diseases. This is because your stell cells are used in regrowing and repairing damaged tissues. The consultation, tests, examination, and treatment are usually done at a relatively low price to decrease your overall expenses
- Stem cell therapy is natural Stem cells are capable of regenerating and tissue repair. Stem cell therapy regrows and repairs the damaged tissues. As compared to surgery, that replaces the joints with artificial parts. Also, stem cell therapy does not degenerate. The cells grow to become part of the joints naturally.
- The recovery time in stem cell therapy is rapid: People often return to their normal life immediately after the procedure, if they want. As compared to surgery that takes weeks and months for full recovery.
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https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org. (2017). Mayo Clinic finds surprising results on the first-ever test of stem cell therapy to treat arthritis. [online] Available at: https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/mayo-clinic-finds-surprising-results-on-first-ever-test-of-stem-cell-therapy-to-treat-arthritis/ [Accessed 13 Dec. 2017].
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