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Jul 10, 2021

Bone marrow aspirate concentrate (BMAC) stem cells for Knee Osteoarthritis

Recently Keeling et al. performed a systematic review evaluating the efficacy of bone marrow aspirate concentrated injections for symptomatic knee osteoarthritis. Bone marrow aspirate concentrate, or BMAC, is a safe and reliable source of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), and one of the few forms of stem cell delivery in compliance with the US FDA guidelines (Chahla et al. 2016).

In this systematic review, 8 studies and 299 knees injections were included with over a 12-month follow-up.

Conclusion: The authors found that bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells were effective with overall excellent outcomes. Patients who had BMAC injections had a significant improvement in pain and function associate with their knee osteoarthritis­.

What is knee osteoarthritis?

Knee osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition where the articular cartilage lining the knee joint wears down. This wear and tear is accompanied by inflammation and a progressive worsening of the condition.

Knee arthritis is estimated to affect over 30 million Americans (Hootman et al. 2006), with 80% of cases affecting the knee (Vos et al. 2012). Traditional non-operative treatment has shown limited efficacy in preventing progression of knee osteoarthritis. ­

What are traditional treatments for knee osteoarthritis?

Historically, knee osteoarthritis is managed with weight loss, modifying activity, physical therapy, bracing, cortisone injections and viscosupplementation or hyaluronic acid injections. Despite these nonoperative treatements arthritis typically progresses.

What is the role of orthobiologics and stem cells in arthritis?

The increasing incidence of osteoarthritis has let to an interest in biologic therapies to alter the underlying progression of arthritis. Cell-based therapies including PRP, micro-fragmented adipose treatments (MFAT) and bone marrow concentrate derived stem cells are a few of the forms of regenerative injections.

Mesencyhmal stem cells have anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties to address the underlying biochemical pathology in arthritis.

Bone Marrow Concentrate

Bone marrow aspirate concentrate, or BMAC, is a safe and reliable source of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), and one of the few forms of stem cell delivery in compliance with the US FDA guidelines.

Knee Osteoarthritis

Learn about alternatives to surgery for knee osteoarthritis, including PRP/platelet rich plasma and viscosupplementation injections.

FDA Guidlines on Orthobiologics

Learn more about FDA guidelines that regulate orthobiologics and consumer protections. Ensure your stem cell procedure is safe and complies with existing guidelines.

For consultation with Dr. Sussman to see if you are a candidate contact us at:

(781) 591-7855

20 Walnut St

Suite 14

Wellesley MA 02481


  1. Chahla J, Dean CS, Moatshe G, Pascual-Garrido C, Serra Cruz R, LaPrade RF. Concentrated bone marrow aspirate for the treatment of chondral injuries and osteoarthritis of the knee: a systematic review of outcomes. Orthop J Sports Med. 2016;4(1):23259671 15625481
  2. Hootman JM, Helmick CG. Projections of US prevalence of arthritis and associated activity limitations. Arthritis Rheum. 2006;54(1):226-229.
  3. Keeling LE, Belk JW, Kraeutler MJ, Kallner AC, Lindsay A, McCarty EC, Postma WF. Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate for the Treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis: A Systematic Review. Am J Sports Med. 2021 Jul 8:3635465211018837.
  4. Vos T, Flaxman AD, Naghavi M, et al. Years lived with disability (YLDs) for 1160 sequelae of 289 diseases and injuries 1990–2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. Lancet. 2012;380:2163-2196.

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