What is regenerative medicine?
Medicine is in an exciting time with the emergence of regenerative medicine therapies.
Regenerative medicine includes a variety of innovative therapies that aim to rebuild, or regenerate, cells, tissues, and organs to restore normal function.
Garavelas Medical Group uses regenerative medicine to help your body repair these tissues naturally. We are collaborating with several universities and Industry as well as international colleagues to explore the latest application of stem cell and other cell-based therapies to improve patient outcomes.
They specialize in advanced regenerative techniques, such as:
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)
PRP uses components of your own blood to promote tissue repair. This concentrated solution contains 5-10 times more healing growth factors than normal blood. When injected into an injury site, PRP stimulates blood flow and helps build healthy new cells.
Platelets and mesenchymal stem cells are key factors important in wound healing. Platelets are found in our circulating blood in small numbers. Techniques used to concentrate platelets drawn from your own blood supply, unlock the healing power of platelets . Platelet-derived growth factors are biologically active substances that enhance tissue repair. Activated platelets at a wound site release proteins that directly and indirectly influence all aspects of the wound healing cascade.
Another type of regenerative medicine uses mesenchymal stem cells, which occur naturally in your bone marrow and fat (adipose). These cells are special because they can turn into (differentiate into) many different types of cells, including cartilage and muscle.
BMAC (Bone marrow-derived stem cells)
Stem cells are gathered by aspirating bone marrow from the back of a patient’s pelvis. One can expect only minimal discomfort from the procedure. The aspirate includes platelets, mesenchymal stem cells, and other kinds of stem cells used in adult stem cell therapy. The bone marrow is placed inside a special machine and this process separates the platelets and stem cells from the remainder of the blood products. It is this concentration of bone marrow—called BMAC, or bone marrow aspiration concentrate—that is reintroduced to the injured area during stem cell therapy.
Lipo-aspirate (Fat-derived stem cells)
Adipose tissue is an excellent source of regenerative stem cells. The stem cells isolated from adipose tissue are abundant, easily extracted via lipo-aspiration, and they are capable of differentiation into numerous cell types. Adipose-derived stem cells hold particular promise in the field of regenerative medicine. Large quantities of adipose-derived stem cells may be collected in a minimally invasive procedure, similar to liposuction. Adipose tissue can be harvested from the belly, love-handles, or buttocks.
What are the risks associated with stem cell treatment?
Injections can potentially cause infection, bleeding, or nerve damage. Risks will also depends on the structure being injected. Because we are using your own cells, the risk of an allergic reaction or rejection of the tissue product is very low. The use of ultrasound guidance helps lower the the risk of damaging surrounding structures, or of injecting the wrong location. Our doctors will review the complete risks of treatment with you. Overall the risks of these treatments are extremely low.
NOTE: Currently stem cell injections are still considered experimental.
Most insurance plans, including Medicare, do NOT pay for stem cell injections.
What should I expect from a regenerative medicine treatment?
PRP and stem cell injections promote natural healing, so it may take a few weeks or months for you to notice an improvement. Regenerative medicine results include reduced pain and inflammation and improved function.
We are actively engaged in studies that focus on the patient and his/her outcomes following both surgical and non-operative care.
Our philosophy is to take what we learn from our patients to help advance the field of scientific discovery and ultimately improve patient care.
Accordingly, you can expect to be asked to participate in one of our studies when you visit our clinic. Our goal is not to burden our patients but to learn from their clinical problems and our treatments to better serve them as well as others.
We welcome you to entrust us with your care as we seek to not only provide state of the art care but to advance the field through research.