How Regenerative Medicine helped meOver the years, I have been very hard on my knees. When I was younger, I was an avid runner and hiker and did a lot of strength training. I started feeling pain in my early thirties and decided to lighten my activity level. My knees got so bad that I had to limit my workouts and stop doing squats and running. As a physician, I knew I had somehow injured or damaged the tissue in my knees, but I didn’t want to have surgery, so I just dealt with the pain and altered my activity level accordingly. I don’t recommend this to any of my patients. Had I addressed the problem sooner, I would have been able to prevent further injury. In 2018 I met a friend and colleague at a Pain conference who was doing Regenerative Therapies. He told me about the benefits of Platelet-Rich-Plasma injections and how they can stimulate the natural healing of our damaged or injured tissues. He is a very well-known educator in the Regenerative world. That was the day that opened my mind to a whole new world of possibilities. I started attending lectures and courses around the country, educating myself on the benefits and science behind this cutting-edge treatment. After attending several classes, I had this spark of motivation and hoped to be able to help patients in a modern and effective way. In 2021 my friend and colleague offered to treat my knees. Unfortunately, this isn’t a procedure I can do myself. I had my first injection during the summer of 2021. After about six weeks, I started noticing an improvement. When I went to the gym, my knees were not as achy, I wasn’t experiencing as much pain during the day, and I could squat while exercising. It wasn’t 100% better, but at that time, it was probably about 60% better. I got two more shots done, spanning a few months between each. Today, my knees are 95% better. I have no pain, and I have been able to increase my activity level by doing the things I love most.
Benefits to Regenerative Therapies
Prolong or Prevent Surgery– This is a big one. Regenerative medicine may help to keep you from having surgery done. This is definitely on a case-by-case basis, and sometimes, depending on the injury, surgery is the only option.
As a physician, my job is to examine your pain source and give you all of the treatment options that are available to you. Once you have all of the information, we can decide together what would work best for you and your lifestyle.
Your own body can heal itself-Regenerative Medicine uses a patient’s blood to heal itself. Sound too good to be true? This is one of the most modern healing treatments available today. It is a safe and effective way to heal tissue and ligaments. The science is behind spinning a patient’s blood in a special centrifuge machine.
This centrifuge separates the red blood cells from the white blood cells. The white blood cells contain growth factors called Leukocytes. Leukocytes can regenerate damaged or injured tissue when injected into the area being treated.
- Very low risk- Because Regenerative Medicine uses your own body to heal, there is little to no risk. It is important to know that certain patients are not candidates for this treatment. These patients include people who smoke, have blood disorders, or have cancer. For these patients, Regenerative Medicine is not recommended.
- Helps to reduce inflammation and pain- The anti-inflammatory healing properties found in Platelet-Rich-Plasma help heal the damaged or injured ligament or tissue. While also helping to reduce inflammation which may reduce pain symptoms.
- Helps to strengthen tissue and ligaments- The growth factors and anti-inflammatory properties that PRP contain help not only heal the tissue but also help to support and strengthen the tissue. Suppose you have minor damage or pain in your joint or ligament. PRP may help keep the area strong to prevent further injury or pain.