Stem cells are immature cells that have the ability to develop into bone, cartilage, muscle, tendon, or ligament. In orthopedics, the most common form of cell based treatment, or "stem cell" injection, uses concentrated mixture of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC's), platelets, interleukins and other from the patients own body. The objective of these cellular-base therapies is to harness the natural regenerative ability of these tissues, and to create a healing environment.
These mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can be taken from either bone marrow or fat (adipose) tissue, and either of these techniques can be performed in the office. After the cells are collected, the components that are not beneficial to healing are filtered out, and the beneficial cells are then injected into an injured area with the goal of reducing pain and improving function.
All autologous cellular based procedures using the patient’s own cells, and are done with minimal manipulation of the cells, with protocol that are compliant with published FDA guidelines. The procedures are performed as a same-day procedure, with cells being harvested, isolated and injected within a period of a few hours.
At Boston Sports & Biologics, we manage minor orthopedic conditions we orthobiologic injections. Many of these injuries can be treated with platelet rich plasma injections. More severe muscle, ligament and tendon tears, moderate to severe joint arthritis, and degenerative joint conditions are treated with bone marrow concentrate injections. Patient with mild arthritis tend to show greater improvements than do patients with higher-grade or more severe arthritis. Recent studies have also shown benefit with bone marrow aspirate derived stem cells in treated partial meniscus tears.
Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) are a special type of cell that can differentiate and develop into different types of cells depending on the signals they receive from surrounding tissues. MSCs can become bone cells (osteoblasts), cartilage cells (chondrocytes), fat cells (adipocytes) or muscle cells (myocytes).
MSCs have been used in orthopedics for more than two decades, and the injection of autologous stem cells to treat arthritis has shown improvement in pain and function. Stem cells injection for knee osteoarthritis is still a relatively new treatment, but based on current evidence, MSCs therapy is effective in relieving pain and improving function in patients with knee OA (Song et al 2020). The cells do no regenerative cartilage in any significant way.
We use ultrasound to identify the injured tendon, ligament or joint, and to guide the needle for the injection.
Most patients will need only one procedure, but sometimes more than one injection is needed.
Cellular based procedures are too new to be covered by insurance. Insurance plans typically cover the initial consultation, follow-up appointments and therapy. Our billing department can answer questions regarding cost.
Stem cell treatments are NOT FDA cleared in the United States, and patients are often lured by unverified claims. The FDA has issued compliance guidelines regarding the use of human cells, tissues, and cellular or tissue-based products, and the FDA has recently issued Patient and Consumer Information about regenerative medicine therapies. We recognize the FDA’s role in assuring patient safety, and all of our treatment protocols are compliant with the published FDA guidelines.
At Boston Sports & Biologics, we use the peer-reviewed published medical literature when available and offer patients a spectrum of treatment of treatment options. Our goal is to offer a comprehensive multi-disciplinary approach that is right for you, and based on strong scientific and clinical evidence. All of the commercial systems we use to process autologous cellular products for our bone marrow concentrate and Lipogems procedures have received FDA-clearance to assure purity and potency. We do not culture cells.
More and more ads online, in newspapers, magazines, and billboards for unproven “stem cell therapies”. Unproven treatments may present serious health, personal and financial considerations. Ensure you go to a physician that practices in compliance with FDA guidelines and is guided by peer-reviewed published medical literature when available.
Like all medical procedures, regenerative procedures have a success and failure rate. Not all patients will experience the same results, and results may vary based on an individual’s overall condition, severity of the pathology and recovery time.