Spine and Back Pain
Stem Cells are An Alternative To Back Surgery
Many patients have turned to Stem Cell Therapy as a better alternative to traditional treatments for chronic back pain, with an easier and faster recovery and with significantly less complications.
Back pain is the most common musculoskeletal disorder. Facet joint disorders, particularly osteoarthritis, are among the most frequent causes of back pain. The joints in our spine, along with the intervertebral discs located between each spinal bone, provide strength and flexibility to the spine. Arthritic joint diseases and disc degeneration, which are often associated, cause destabilization of the spine,
resulting in pain and disability.
Traditional treatments for chronic back pain are mostly based on a couple of options. One possibility is to manage pain through continued use of medication or through repeated injections of analgesic drugs. This promotes pain relief but does not treat or eliminate the source of the pain. The other possibility is surgery, usually to fuse parts of the spine, which reduces spine mobility and, in some cases, may fail to eliminate pain and may even require patients to keep taking medication for pain management.
These options are far from ideal because the long-term use of pain medication is associated with a number of undesired side effects, and back surgery, as with most surgeries, has some risks, including pain, blood clots, reactions to anesthesia, infections or muscle loss. Recovery from back surgery may be relatively slow and actions such as bending, lifting heavy objects, and twisting the body may need to be avoided for several months.
How Does Stem Cell Therapy for Back Pain Work?
The aim of using Stem Cell Therapy is to support the self-healing process of the affected joints, generate new tissue, repair injury and slow down, suppress and even reverse damaging inflammatory processes. This should lead to symptom relief and recovery of the damaged area of the spine.
At the Boston Stem Cell Center, we use a patient’s own stem cells to repair the damaged spinal joints naturally. Stem cells exist in high concentrations in bone marrow and fat, which can be aspirated with minimal discomfort, and then injected into the damaged area of the spine along with concentrated platelet rich plasma.
We use platelet rich plasma which is obtained by the simple method of centrifuging a sample of your own blood. Platelet rich plasma has a high concentration of growth factors that activate the stem cells and that prompt them to produce additional growth factors and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Platelet rich plasma has been shown to be superior to local anesthetic and corticosteroid injections in treating lumbar facet joint syndrome.
With the support of platelet rich plasma, stem cells provide the precursor cells for repair and also change the environment in the spine from inflammatory to healing and regenerating. Stem cells will then begin to heal the damaged area of the spine by stimulating cellular proliferation and local repair processes, and by reducing inflammation, resulting in pain relief and improved function.
Typically, a single stem cell treatment should be sufficient to yield good results. This is usually combined with additional platelet rich plasma injections to reinforce the activity of stem cells. We do all our stem cell procedures under ultrasound or X-Ray fluoroscopic guidance to increase accuracy and decrease the likelihood of complications.
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Is Stem Cell Treatment Right For You?
Although Stem Cell Treatment is considered by some people to be experimental, various research studies show that regenerative stem cell therapy and platelet rich plasma injections can provide excellent relief from joint and musculoskeletal pain and ongoing inflammation.