Stem Cell Therapy For Orthopedic Injuries and Arthritis
Stems cell therapy is a cutting-edge treatment that is being used in orthopedic and sports medicine. The procedure involves using a patient’s own stem cells, which have the unique property of being able to develop into many different cell types, to treat injuries and arthritis.
Stem cells can be taken from the bone marrow or from a small amount of fat tissue, which is known as bone marrow aspirate or lipoaspirate respectively. The aspirate (containing the stem cells) is then injected into the site of injury so the cells can help repair the injured or degenerative tissue.
The procedure is minor and can be done in the office with minimal down time. Patients often return to work the next day.
Stem cell therapy is also commonly used to treat arthritis, meniscal tears and a variety of orthopedic and medical conditions. Patients can experience significant pain relief and improved function within a few months after the procedure.
In 2017-18, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) significantly restricted the practice of stem cell procedures. The FDA does still allow for same day procedures of bone marrow aspirate and lipoaspirate as long as certain strict criteria are met: there must be minimal manipulation of the bone marrow or fat tissue and centrifugation is allowed only for the removal of debris from the sample tissue. Dr. Carter’s practice operates in full compliance with the FDA standards.
Risks Associated with Stem Cell Therapy
Although stem cell therapy has been used for decades, it is still considered experimental in orthopedic and sports medicine. Stem cell therapy should NOT be used as the first step in treating an orthopedic injury. The risk of bone marrow aspiration for stem cell therapy includes infection, prolonged bleeding, pain at the aspiration or injection site and bruising.
The best way to determine if you are a candidate for stem cell therapy is to have a thorough evaluation by a licensed, board certified physician (MD or DO) experienced with stem cell therapies. There are a growing number of chiropractors, nurses and other practitioners, who market themselves as providers of such therapies, but are no way qualified to do stem cell treatments.
Why Choose Dr. Carter?
- Dr. Carter has almost a decade of extensive experience with regenerative medicine procedures and is an active member of the American Academy of Regenerative Medicine and the International Society of Regenerative Medicine. By the end of 2018, she will be part of an elite group of physicians that have met a high level of experience, education and have passed a rigorous test to become board certified in Regenerative Medicine – this is in addition to her board certifications in Sports Medicine and in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation.
- Dr. Carter’s does a comprehensive 1-hour orthopedic evaluation. She takes the time to thoroughly understand the patient’s lifestyle and to determine why the injury or condition developed and why other treatments might have failed. Based on the patient’s goals and to ensure a successful outcome, activity or exercise modifications are often recommended.
- The success rate for patients receiving stem cell therapy for arthritic conditions in Dr. Carter’s practice is over 90%. Most patients experience complete pain relief and significantly improved function.
- Dr. Carter has been consistently rated a Top Doctor by numerous state and national organizations.
- Complimentary car service is provided to and from Dr. Carter’s office for patients receiving stem cell therapy.
- A complimentary session with one of Dr. Carter’s in-house physical therapists is provided one week after treatment to start the rehabilitative process.
Dr. Carter offers a complimentary 10-minute phone consultation for those interested in stem cell therapy.
FAQ – Stem Cell Therapy
Q: Does Dr. Carter perform stem cell treatments for the spine and joints?
A: Yes. Dr. Carter treats virtually all orthopedic and sports conditions, including disorders and injuries of the spine.
Q: Where does Dr. Carter get the stem cells from?
A: Stem cells can be obtained from the bone marrow/pelvic bone or from a small amount of abdominal fat tissue.
Q: Is stem cell therapy covered by insurance?
A: Stem cell therapy is typically not covered by insurances. However, depending on your condition, partial reimbursement may be possible. Reimbursement questions can be answered in more detail after your consult and once we know more about your condition and your insurance coverage.
Q: How much does stem cell therapy cost?
A: The price can vary depending on the type of condition being treated and whether bone marrow aspirate or fat tissue is utilized.
Q: Do I have to pay for the initial consult?
A: It depends on your insurance plan. We do work with certain PPO plans. As a courtesy, we will verify your insurances benefits on your behalf prior to your visit. Any upfront costs for the initial consult will be deducted from the total cost of the stem cell procedure, if done by Dr. Carter.