Stem Cell Therapy For Meniscus Tear – An Alternative To Meniscus Surgery
A meniscus tear is a common knee injury which occurs when the meniscus, a rubbery, C-shaped disc that cushions your knee, is torn due to forceful twisting. Older adults are more prone to meniscus tears as their cartilage weakens and wears thin over time. In many cases, doctors will recommend arthroscopic surgery to repair the meniscus tear. This requires the doctor to insert a miniature camera through a small incision to see the inside of the knee. Then, a surgeon will either remove the damaged meniscus tissue or stitch the torn meniscus pieces together.
However, meniscus surgery is not a perfect solution for many patients. In most procedures, doctors will remove the torn meniscus tissues which can lead to knee arthritis or accelerate degeneration in the knee. Furthermore, meniscus surgery requires patients to go through a lengthy rehabilitation process. This process may require patients to wear a cast or brace and use crutches for about a month. Then, patients must undergo regular rehabilitation exercises to restore knee strength and mobility. In total, rehabilitation after a meniscus surgical procedure could take about 3 months, and patients may not regain the functionality they previously had before the meniscus tear.
At the Institute of Regenerative Medicine, we offer a safe alternative to meniscus surgery. Using advances in regenerative medicine, we can repair a patient’s meniscus by using their stem cells. Patients who receive stem cell therapy for a meniscus tear experience a quicker recovery and avoid the long term effect to the knee as a result of removing parts of the meniscus.
Our Patient’s Story
Mitch Gould, CEO of Nutritional Products International and InHealth Media.
Though Mitch Gould is known for his competitiveness in the business world, he is also an avid tennis player. During a friendly hitting session with tennis legend Jimmy Connors, winner of 109 singles titles; Gould injured his meniscus. Concern that his sports injury would prevent him from playing tennis again, Gould talked to Dr. Purita and determined stem cell therapy for a meniscus tear was a good fit.
“After a series of shots, a lot of yelling and six weeks of healing I truly feel like a new man,” said Gould. “The procedure is incredible. I never thought I would feel this good. Another month of physical therapy and it’s time to hit the courts again.”
How Stem Cell Therapy For A Meniscus Tear Work?
Stem cells are the body’s natural healers. When we get injured, the stem cells will convert into other types of cells that are needed to repair a damaged joint such as cartilage, bone, or muscle. However, as we get older, the number of stem cells in our body will decline.
To make up for the decline, we collect stem cells from the patient’s blood, fat tissues, and bone marrow and process them to create a high concentration of stem cells. We then combine the stem cells with other regenerative cells and various growth factors, including human growth hormones (HGH). The growth factors will stimulate for the stem cells to increase their healing potential as the stem cells repair the meniscus tear. The concentrated mixture of stem cells and growth factors are then injected directly where the torn meniscus is located in the knee using ultrasound to guide the injection. Once injected, the stem cells will begin the process of repairing the torn meniscus. The entire stem cell therapy procedure only takes a few hours to complete, and patients will be able to leave the clinic immediately.
When Do I See Results?
After the injection, the stem cell will begin the healing process immediately. However, because the stem cells are restoring the meniscus through a natural process, results will not be instant. Typically, patients will begin to see a response from the stem cell therapy in about 3 to 4 weeks after the injection. Afterward, the stem cells will continue the healing process, and patients will see even greater results in the following weeks.
For most patients, a single stem cell injection is all that is needed to heal their torn meniscus. For patients with severe damage, a second stem cell injection may be needed after the first month from the first injection. The number of stem cell injections will be determined after our orthopedic surgeons examine a patient’s medical files to determine the severity of the meniscus tear.
Is Stem Cell Therapy Safe?
Stem cell therapy for a meniscus tear is a safe alternative to surgery and can be utilized by anyone. We follow FDA guidelines and do not grow stem cell or inject any foreign substances into the patient. We only use stem cells that we collect from the patient’s blood, fat tissues, and bone marrow, and do not use stem cells from third party sources. The risk of infections or rejection is virtually nonexistent as a result. However, to determine if stem cell therapy would be an effective choice for you, our medical staff would have to examine your medical files first.
How Much Does Stem Cell Therapy For A Meniscus Repair Cost?
To maximize success, we tailor our stem cell therapy based on the unique needs of our patients. For this reason, the cost of stem cell therapy for a meniscus repair will vary greatly from case to case and can only be determined after our orthopedic specialist has evaluated a patient’s knee. Factors that will determine the cost for stem cell therapy includes:
It is important to note that most health insurance companies will not cover the cost of stem cell therapy for a meniscus repair. However, in many cases, the cost of stem cell therapy can be similar to the cost patients will pay out of pocket for knee surgery and post-surgical care with insurance.