Regenerative Medicine: Stem cells from bone marrow and adipose tissue (fat)
For more severe orthopedic problems, we must help the body by directly injecting autologous stem cells (from you) in the injured area. The type of stem cells involved in tissue repair are called mesenchymal stem cells. Your body two sources from which we get the mesenchymal stem cells needed for treatments: your bone marrow or your adipose tissue (fat). Examples for which treatment may work:
- Osteoarthritis of joints
- Muscle, tendon or torn ligament
- Lumbar disc disease
- Injury of the shoulder and hip
- And many others
Stem cells from bone marrow
Bone marrow aspiration is generally made by taking a small amount of bone marrow from the iliac crest. After a local anesthesia, we insert a special needle called a cannula to aspirate bone marrow.
After aspiration, we are preparing a bone marrow concentrate with our Health Canada approved, Angel centrifuge system made by Arthrex. This procedure gives a predictable number of stem cells and growth factors. We use ultrasound guidance to ensure the precise location then we inject the cells concentrated in the appropriate area.
Stem cells of the adipose tissues are better for treating some problems than stem cells from the bone marrow. Based on your diagnosis, your doctor will determine the appropriate method.
Stem cells from adipose tissue
To obtain stem cells from fat (adipose tissue), we do a little liposuction in your abdomen. First, we perform a local anesthesia in the area from which the fat has to be removed to minimize discomfort. Then inserting a small cannula to aspirate fat. The amount of fat needed to be extracted depends on the area being treated.
We do not manipulate the extracted fat tissues. With ultrasound guidance, we injected cells into the wound or tear with a small amount of PRP. This whole process, from extraction to injection, lasts about 1-2 hours.
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