Regenerative Medicine

Southwest Pain Management -  - Pain Management

Southwest Pain Management

Pain Management Specialists & Pain Management located in Irving, TX

Regenerative medicine uses the same technique that your body does when trying to heal a cut, scrape, or injury. If the injury is small, such as a paper cut, your body can heal it by recruiting stem cells that live on near blood vessels. Platelets not only form the clot but release growth factors that increase collagen production. Stem cells divide and form new connective tissue and skin. While this process works well for small injuries such as a paper cut, it fails when the injury is larger than the time required for the healing processes to finish. The process stops short. Our bodies don’t heal an injury forever till it's repaired. The process is faster when we are younger and slows as we age. If you are interested in regenerative medicine, contact the experts at Southwest Pain Management. We will decide together which of these options is the best one for you and your injury.

Regenerative Medicine Q & A

What is Regenerative Medicine?

Traditional steroid injections have been used to treat pain for over 50 years. The steroid is placed at the site of inflammation, thus reducing it. Inflammation causes pain. Steroids do not heal damaged tissue, however. Steroids can help with bursitis and inflammation caused by arthritis as well as disc herniations.  Tendon tears, loss of collagen, and ligament looseness cannot be healed by steroids.

Regenerative medicine works differently. It uses the same technique that your body does when trying to heal a cut, scrape, or injury. If the injury is small, such as a paper cut, your body can heal it by recruiting stem cells that live on near blood vessels. Platelets not only form the clot but release growth factors that increase collagen production. Stem cells divide and form new connective tissue and skin. While this process works well for small injuries such as a paper cut, it fails when the injury is larger than the time required for the healing processes to finish. The process stops short. Our bodies don’t heal an injury forever till its repaired. The process is faster when we are younger and slows as we age.

The team at Southwest Pain Management uses only your own adult stem cells harvested from your own bone marrow. We never offer or use any embryonic stem cells.    

Regenerative medicine restarts this process even long after your body has forgotten about the injury. There are several regenerative products available. The simplest and oldest is prolotherapy. A mild irritant such as dextrose is injected near the injured area. The irritation recruits stem cell again to attempt to repair injured tissue. Tendons and ligaments become thickened making them stronger than before, like how broken bones become thicker and stronger at the break point. 

Repair doesn’t just happen automatically just because a regenerative product is injected near or into an injured area. We must create precise microtrauma where the tissue is injured or torn to start the process. This is where the expertise comes into play. 

Most types of tissue can be healed including some types of nerve damage. Injuries such as rotator cuff tears, biceps tendon tears, Achilles tendon tears, as well as arthritic changes in knees may be helped by regenerative medicine treatments.

A better version of prolotherapy is achieved with platelet rich plasma or PRP. PRP is made from your own blood. Platelets are activated to release growth factors in addition to recruiting stem cells. Amnion tissue made from the amniotic sac tissue that is cleaned and screened contains about 1000 times more growth factors compared to PRP. Exosomes are similarly made from amniotic sac tissue. This is more useful for those over 45 years old. Exosomes help improve the communication network that calls your stem cells as well as release growth factors and carry information to make more healing proteins in the area.

Alpha-2-macroglobulin large protein that is also made from your own blood. This product doesn’t regenerate tissue. What this product does is deactivate the proteases in joint fluid that can eat away at your cartilage for up to 3 months. This can create a perfect joint environment for placing stem cells into. 

Lastly there are mesenchymal stem cells that can be harvested from your bone marrow. Stem cells are taken from the back of your pelvic bone. Instead of waiting for stem cells to come to the area of injury, your own stem cells are injected into that area.

Treatment may be repeated after 4 weeks but no more than 3 times in a row. In this case, more or more often is not better. A month or more of rest is required for your stem cell system to reset.

If you are interested in regenerative medicine, contact the experts at Southwest Pain Management. We will decide together which of these options is the best one for you and your injury.