Stem cells are the body’s ultimate building blocks, with unmatched healing potential. They are undifferentiated cells that have the ability to transform into a variety of different cells and have the potential of rebuilding damaged tissue, including cartilage, muscles, tendons and ligaments. Stem cells are present in significant numbers in our own bone marrow and adipose (fat) tissue. Trained physicians can safely and legally harvest adult stem cells in a medical office procedure room with sterile techniques, for use in same-day regenerative procedures.
At Desert Orthopedics, Dr. Swift can obtain bone marrow rich in stem cells with very little discomfort. This procedure takes about 45 minutes. Dr. Swift uses the Marrow Cellution aspiration needle technique as well as Emcyte Genesis Pure Bone Marrow Concentrating systems. These stem cells are obtained via bone marrow harvesting through a needle from the patient’s pelvis (iliac crest), which is a great source of marrow and has plentiful amounts of stem cells. Bone marrow stem cells are then injected accurately into the treatment area with ultrasound or fluoroscopic (x-ray) guidance.
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is frequently injected at the same time to provide additional growth factors to activate the stem cells. This combination is synergistic, like planting seeds (stem cells) with fertilizer (PRP growth factors). Stem cell injections are sometimes followed several weeks later with another PRP injection to maximize healing potential with another round of growth factors.