What Is Regenerative Orthopedics?
Updated: Nov 8, 2019
In its simplest form, this is a field of Orthopedics focused on healing and preserving tissue in your body, instead of masking painful symptoms and replacing your body with prosthetic joints, screws, rods, etc.
For decades, managing orthopedic issues that did not respond to therapy and rest led to generations of patients taking medications that masked their problems, while their body's continued to breakdown. Eventually, this led to sky rocketing numbers of surgeries like joint replacements, knee scopes, and fusions. The medications that slow down your ability to heal are all the anti-inflammatory medications - most of which are over the counter - and the strongest being, steroids. Taking these types of drugs by mouth, injections into muscles, and injections into joints actually causes your body to break down and degenerative much faster. While short term pain relief is achieved, long term destruction of your body ensues. Other medications like tylenol and opioids also mask the pain, which tricks you into thinking everything is better while your body continues to degenerate.
Regenerative treatments, done properly, involve cells FROM YOUR OWN BODY.
Any tissue from another source is not an acceptable "stem cell" treatment at this time.
One of the treatments we are allowed to use involves cells from your blood and is called platelet rich plasma or PRP. This should be used most often, as it is the least invasive and least expensive. After simply drawing your blood, we can get the product we need for a regenerative platelet rich plasma injection. Using fat and bone marrow from your body to get different types of cells, like stem cells, is more invasive and more expensive but can also be done safely in our office when indicated.
The main goal of these treatments is to preserve your body, and help it heal in a more natural way. Traditional treatments with medications, cortisone shots and surgeries will hopefully have more limited roles as advancements in regenerative treatments become more available.