UPDATED February 15, 2019– For most patients suffering with debilitating knee damage and/or osteoarthritis, the treatment options are usually limited to masking the pain with cortisone steroid injections, risky joint replacement surgery or simple physical therapy which does not target the root cause. The regeneration center offers a powerful non-surgical alternative to knee replacements using a combination stem cells, growth factors along with PRP. Our Knee stem cell therapy uses clinical grade MSC+ cell infusions for people suffering from degenerative hip and knee arthritis induced pain or for those looking for an effective alternative to knee replacement surgery or for those with common ligament, tendon and bone injuries from playing sports or degenerative arthritis. Get back to doing all the things you love to do in life, faster & without invasive surgeries.
Repair Meniscus Tears, Ligament & Tendon Tears and Injuries from Overuse
The human body consists of billions of very specialized cells that differentiate into specific purposed organs such as skin, muscle, brain, heart, ligaments, tendons, bones and connective joints. These specialized cells are constantly circulating through the body as part of our natural regenerative process. Typically, when older cells die ( apoptosis ), new cells are created from our circulating stem cells that have the capability of creating multiple types of cell lineages.(23745314) When tissue in the human body is injured, the degenerative effects exceed our natural regenerative process, resulting in joint structures becoming weaker, less functional and painful. This is especially true for middle-aged and older patients who get injuries in areas like the knees that are isolated from continuous blood circulation ( vehicle for stem cells ).
There are several specific types of stem cells in our body, however only a few cell types are beneficial for musculoskeletal applications such as hip injuries and shoulder repairs. Mesenchymal stem cell markers (MSCs) offer the highest potential for articular cartilage regeneration. MSC cells used in our treatment are isolated from a select group of cell rich tissues, then expanded in our stem cell lab to enhance their differentiation potential.(21560849)
The positive cell markers used in the isolation and expansion include: STRO-1, CD146,CD73, CD166,CD105 and CD106.
The negative MSC cell markers include: CD45, CD11b, CD31,CD34 and CD117.
The Bioactive factors that are secreted by our enhanced MSC cells have allow us to inhibit any tissue scarring, suppress the apoptosis phase, stimulate angiogenesis, and also enhance mitosis of stem and progenitor cells. The Enhanced Mesenchymal cell protocols we offer provides our patients with many practical advantages of engineered cartilage cells that can be used to repair osteochondral and chondral lesions and also to initiate endogenous regenerative capacity in the knee joints.
The Regen Center Orthopedic department is the leading provider of non-surgical repair for injuries and chronic knee pain from conditions such as :
- ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) Non-Retracted sprain or tear
- MCL (Medial Cruciate Ligament) sprain or tear
- PCL (Posterior Cruciate Ligament) sprain or tear
- Rheumatoid arthritis of the Knees
- Knee Tendonitis or Tendinopathy
- Patellar Tendinosis or Tendonitis
- Bone on bone Osteoarthritis
- Runner’s Knee aka Chondromalacia
- Pes anserine Bursitis
- Patelofemoral syndrome ( PFS )
- Iliotibial band syndrome ( ITBS )
- Osgood-Schlatter Disease ( OSD )
- Synovial plica syndrome & Medial plica syndrome
- Knee Meniscus Injury & Tears
- Bursitis of the Knees
- Baker’s cysts
Stem Cells for Non-Retracted Full or Partial ACL Tears
The Regen Center ACL repair protocol is a combination therapy using enhanced cells and PRP to heal partially torn Anterior cruciate ligaments and complete non-retracted ACL tears. Our safe non-surgical alternative to repair ACL is a very viable option for those considering surgical intervention because of a partial ACL tear or complete non-retracted tear.
Stem Cell knee therapy can help you avoid extended downtime and the painful rehabilitation process that traditionally follows after anterior cruciate ligament surgery. For severe or complex injuries, our orthopaedic team targets the injured ACL tear using sophisticated image guidance to ensure optimal delivery of the cells for a successful minimally invasive procedure.
Stem Cells for Treating Meniscus Tears
Stem Cell therapy for meniscus tears is the most common type of knee injury we treat. Surgically repairing a meniscus tear should be considered the last option. Meniscus tear repairs work by surgically removing some (partial meniscectomy) ,or all of an very important structure in the knee. For most cases we see, a minimally invasive combination of stem cells, PRP and post therapy physical rehabilitation is usually a safer and better option. (24178764)
Meniscus is a crescent-shaped fibro cartilaginous structure that acts as both spacer between the femur and tibia while also providing shock absorption capabilities for the knee joint. It is able to be an effective shock absorber by equally distributing any blunt forces across the knee joints. A meniscus is composed of living fibrocartilage tissue and each knee has 2 menisci.
- A medial meniscus (closer to the inside)
- A lateral meniscus (closer to the outside)
For various biomechanical reasons most injuries occur on the medial meniscus.
Types of Knee Meniscus Tears Treated with MSC+ Cell Therapy
The medial meniscus is usually the most injured part of a knee. Most acute traumatic meniscus tears we treat happen due to sudden and traumatic twisting of the knees. For some elderly patients traumatic injuries and meniscus tears are caused over gradual weakening of the meniscus as a result of degenerative and/or arthritic knee joints. Meniscus tears are usually described by the position/location of the tear (posterior or anterior) and which one of the 2 meniscus that was injured (lateral or medial) Some examples for meniscus tears include:
Meniscus Flap Tears or unstable meniscus tears: This type of meniscus injuries/flap tears occur in the inner rim and usually involve a small part of the meniscus. This type of injury is not able to heal without intervention since the area in the knee does not have adequate blood supply. Most traditional orthopedic surgeons like to “trim” or “shave” (remove) the meniscus that leads to other long term knee issues. Use caution if considering surgical intervention as stem cells are a better alternative to repair the tear and bring back stabilized full range of motion.
Bucket Handle Meniscus Tear: Bucket handle meniscus tears are usually more painful than other types of tears. When the entire inner rim of the medial meniscus is torn it is called a “bucket handle tear” due to it looking like a handle bucket. These types of tears usually always occur in an area with good blood supply and if caught early, they can be sutured back into place. Alternatively, enhanced stem cell infusions + paracrine signalling can also be used to accomplish the same repair without any risk and downtime associated with surgery.
A Medial Meniscus Tear: The Medial menisci can be found in the inner side of our knee joints. The torn medial meniscus diagnosis usually describes a tear on the medial meniscus that is often caused by traumatic injury or sudden change of force and direction that occurs in sports such as skiing, basketball, football, soccer and volleyball. This type of injury can also occur due as a result of repetitive use injuries like long-distance running, track and field and cycling along with long term degenerative knees in older patients. Stem cell therapies can treat medial meniscus tears very efficiently and without need of surgical intervention.(25990685)
Complex Degenerative Meniscus Tears: Degenerative meniscus tears are most commonly found in middle-aged or elderly patients due to decades of repetitive stresses that have severely weakened the meniscal tissue. Unlike Acute Traumatic Tears, Degenerative meniscus tears are not sudden and are more symptomatic in nature. Common symptoms of degenerative meniscus tears include:
- Pain along the joint line
- Catching and locking
Degenerative meniscal tears in the knees are usually associated with Lupus, osteoarthritis and degenerative joint diseases. These types of tears are commonly associated with osteoarthritis of the knees and cause the menisci to tear or fray in multiple directions. With that many tears most surgeons do not try to surgically repair since it likely will cause more harm than good. If traumatic meniscus tears are left untreated they can often lead to peripheral neuropathy and arthritis. For such degenerative knee injuries, the regen centre offers an aggressive stem cell protocol with PRP and growth factors to heal the area using our bodies natural repair mechanisms.
Recent published studies have shown that meniscus removal surgeries are no more effective than not having surgery or just having physical therapy. Surgical meniscus removal creates much higher impact forces inside the knees and it is estimated that removing as little as 10% of the knee meniscus tissue can increase overall knee joint stress about 65%%. When more that half (50%) of the menisci is surgically removed through surgery, the stress levels increases exponentially leading to more failure and more knee surgeries and ultimately left with the option of a total knee replacement surgery which normally lasts only 15-20 years before needing to be replaced yet again with another surgery.
Patient Benefits of Knee Stem Cell Therapy – Not a 1 day procedure
Please note our treatment protocols need proper isolation, expansion and multi-stage delivery of stem cells that will require 14-16 days in Bangkok. The entire process does not require surgery or overnight hospital stays and patients are able to return to their normal activities following the week long procedure and also avoid the risk of lengthy and painful rehabilitation needed after invasive knee joint surgeries. Our stem cell injections help promote naturally anti-inflammatory agents, such as cytokines and contain essential growth factors, which help stimulate tissue growth. Proper rehabilitation is recommended after treatment to help restore the strength, range-of-motion and mobility of the knee joints to pre-injury levels.(25426260)
Are Stem Cell Infusions Safe?
Hematopoietic Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapies have been used for over 45 years now and are very safe, effective alternative treatment. With several thousand injections already been performed by our medical team, we have never had a single case that reported adverse side effects to the treatment.
TREATMENT PRECAUTIONSStem Cell Therapy for Knee Injuries and Knee Arthritis are not appropriate for all cases. Patients without a diagnosis, old injuries, unidentifiable tissue damage, complete tears, travel restrictions or severe structural problems will not qualify for the 2-3 week treatment.
Orthopedic Stem Cell Treatment for Knee Arthritis & Knee Joint Repair
Number of Cell Injections for Knee: 2-6 Injections of Isolated and Expanded Mesenchymal “MSC+” Cells
Type of Cells Used and Injection Locations: For less severe injuries, a protocol will require enhanced Mesenchymal cells (MSC+) that are Autologous (from the patient) Peripheral Blood, Adipose tissue or Bone Marrow derived. For older patients or people with multiple conditions and/or severe degeneration we will use immune compatible cells derived from Cord tissue, Amniotic Membrane, and/or placental tissue derived MSC+ cells. Our enhanced cell therapy to repair knee joints does not require surgery and can be delivered through a Guided imaging (when necessary) or more commonly through direct injection in injured site, Intrathecally with Intravenous Drip “IV Drips”
Rehabilitation Options Post Treatment: Physical Rehabilitation therapy after treatment is highly recommended in Bangkok or upon return to your home. We have complete physical rehab packages at Bangkok International Hospital or Bumrungrad International Hospital depending on your travel/time constraints. Our rehabilitation program is available upon request for 2-3 hours per day and up to 5 days per week. Thai Medical visas and/or hotel accommodations for the patient and family can also be provided upon request.
Total Treatment Length : Estimated treatment time for stem cell knee injuries is 2-3 weeks in Bangkok (depending on the severity of the underlying injury)
Cost of Treating Knee Osteoarthritis with MSC+ Cells
Due to the varying degrees of injuries our orthopedic team will need to conduct a virtual consultation with all potential patients. This can be done online using the patient’s current medical records such as recent MRI scan or CT Scans along with reports from the patients orthopedic doctors in their home country. Once the review is complete we can know for certain if the patient is a candidate and provide a detailed treatment plan that will include the exact total number nights required in Bangkok, Thailand along with fixed and total medical related costs.
ARE YOU LOOKING TO RELIEVE KNEE PAIN WITHOUT SURGERY?
If you or a loved one is suffering from degenerative knee conditions, knee injuries, difficulty standing up or walking stairs or are considering stem cell therapy instead of knee replacement surgery, you may be a candidate for our procedure. To learn more, please contact us today.