Hip pain caused by arthritis can make life awkward on a daily basis, and usually leads to long-term pain management if the problem cannot be corrected. Previously, solutions such as hip surgery, hip resurfacing or replacement surgery were the only real medical options for those struggling with often debilitating pain; however there is now an effective alternative that really works. This article is going to explain more about stem cell therapy and how it can help patients suffering from hip arthritis.
Do You Really Need Surgery?
Although hip surgeries are often typically successful, they can also be traumatic for the patient and can lead to months of painful recovery and discomfort that comes from trying to recover one's mobility and strength. Stem cell therapy, on the other hand, often allows patients to walk the same day, and discomfort is minimal with little to no down-time after such procedures. Between 1-3 treatments could repair your hip without the need for traumatic surgery over a given time frame.
What is Stem Cell Therapy?
Stem cell therapy involves extracting cells from the patient's own body namely from the Adipose or fat tissue. These cells are responsible for regenerating and healing the body, and can be harvested from your own fat tissue, purified and then injected directly into the affected hip area.
These stem cells cannot only help your body heal and renew itself, they can also differentiate into ligaments, cartilage and tendons, helping to relieve chronic pain in the treatment of many types of osteoarthritis. In many cases, stem cell therapy for hip arthritis can even eliminate the need for surgery altogether.
How it Works
Once the cells have been extracted from your body's fat tissue by an experienced physician, they are prepared and then injected back directly into the damaged area. Once stem cells have been injected into a damaged joint, they can transform into chondrocytes, which are cells that will lead to the production of fresh cartilage. This concentrated treatment essentially mimics your body's natural healing process, and can generate tissue that is used to repair damaged or diseased areas, such as joints affected by osteoarthritis.
Stem cells can also attract new stem cells to the damaged site, helping your body to repair itself quicker, as well as reducing inflammation and preventing loss of function or scarring to the area.
Could hip surgery soon be seen as a thing of the past? Stem cell therapy is being seen as the future for the treatment of osteoarthritis and other joint disorders, for a number of reasons. This type of treatment has a very high success rate, and is less risky to the patient, while eliminating most of the pain. Disability and down-time a patient would normally experience from having complicated surgeries is becoming a thing of the past. Stem cell therapy is also far less traumatic, and removes the risk of rejection that is associated with surgery.
Since the stem cells being used are taken from your own body, the risk of rejection is extremely low, with no real reports of serious complications or adverse effects in scientific studies.
Treatments usually take around four hours, and afterwards you may experience some soreness in the area with perhaps some bruising. Following treatment, you may return to work the next day and will be encouraged to use the affected hip joint normally. Follow-up treatments of platelet rich plasma (PRP) are usually given at monthly intervals in order to prolong the effectiveness of the stem cells and to help them carry out their job.
PRP is a mixture of growth factors and platelets that occur naturally in the body, and helps the stem cells to take effect and develop into cartilage, ligaments, new joints and more, by providing nourishment and cell signals to the area. PRP enables stem cells to regenerate by themselves inside the body, and can help trigger their development.
Stem cell treatment is extremely safe, and therefore can be repeated if your doctor deems it necessary in order to achieve the best results. Stem cell treatments would not render you ineligible for surgery, although most find this unnecessary following treatment.
Conditions Currently Being Treated with Stem Cell Therapy
Right now, stem cell therapy is being used to treat a number of medical conditions, including the following:
- Rotator cuff tendonitis
- Non-healing fractures
- Avascular necrosis of the hip
- Osteochondral defects
- Biceps tendonitis
- Chronic epicondylitis (tennis and golfer’s elbow)
- Osteochondritis dessicans
- Ligament injuries
- Labral tears of the hip and shoulder
- Degenerative disc disease
- Chronic neck and back pain
- Chronic groin and hamstring strains
- Post concussion syndrome
What Should You Do Next?
Stem cell treatments are extremely promising, with great advances having already been made in the treatment of many injuries, diseases and conditions such as osteoarthritis. Scientists from around the world are working on new ways to harness the power of stem cells and use them to treat various medical conditions, with new trials being carried out all the time.
If you have hip arthritis or have had an injury to your hip that is limiting mobility for you, seek advice on the potentials treatment options available to you. Surgery should be your last resort, especially as you get older. There are other alternative treatment options available. Ask what they are!
As with any form of medical treatment, you should consult with your physician before embarking on any treatment plan. The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be deemed accurate for the purposes of diagnosing your particular medical condition.