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Stem Cell Injections for Knees

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Years have worn out the knees and recently I tore a chunk out of one of the cartilages in my knee. The surgeon is suggesting Stem cell injection to regrow the cartilage plus to grow some cartilage where its really thin. Just wondering if anyone has had any experience with this procedure, was it successful, is it worth the money. Lots of positive marketing data out there, but cannot find hard data on the procedure. The stem cell procedure will cost between 4 to 5k out of pocket as insurance will not pay for it FDA issues, its sad I can get a knee replaced for a whole lot less.

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Depends on the diagnosis, i.e. osteoarthritis vs. acute injury. Depends on the surgeon, i.e. method of introducing the stem cells-Stevie Wonder injection technique vs. open surgery direct placement. Not a lot of success history. Controversial even in the rarefied air of the NBA and NFL moneybags. I think your estimate of out of pocket expenses is way low. More like 50K, more if complications. Depends on source of stem cells, expertise of surgeon, your ability to stay relatively immobile while recovering (no working), and your ability to get to and from hospital and specific physical rehabilitation experts. No guarantees of success, as usual with any surgery. Depending on your relation with your surgeon, and there are some very excellent orthopedic surgeons in Alabama, you may want a second opinion. Here is the hard data: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3897321/ From the NIH, which is reliable, because they are real scientists, as opposed to the CDC which has become a political wing of executive branch of government. Good luck. I would opt for repair and then total knee when ready. It takes a full year to get back to square one with a total knee and usually both need to be done. Tough problem.

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I have a good friend who could barley walk 20', couldn't stand for more than a minute, knees were shot.

He got some sort of injections( he didn't call it stem cell) that was supposed to rebuild/fix his knees.

It's been about a year now, he says he hasn't been this pain free in over 20 years, said there was a noticeable difference the next morning

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In general, if insurance doesn't pay for it, it's because there is not a scientific consensus that it's an effective treatment. It's long term expensive to keep paying to do things that don't work.

Knee replacements are expensive, but they are proven effective - just ask TGO.

Edited by peterthefish

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Knee replacements are expensive, but they are proven effective - just ask TGO.

Take a REAL HARD look at knee replacements. They have a proven track record. The sooner you have them done, the sooner you are back in your game.

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Knee replacements are expensive, but they are proven effective - just ask TGO.

Take a REAL HARD look at knee replacements. They have a proven track record. The sooner you have them done, the sooner you are back in your game.

They also wear out, I know 2 guys who are on their second set. My FIL has worn out his hip and on the 2nd one as well. Don't do the cortisone injections, they are a short term bandaid for a problem that needs further attention.

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Update: I had the stem cell injection the cost was 4k (anybody want to buy a dodge 1500) for the procedure so much for a new CZ this year. FDA is still researching the stem cell procedure and when its approved insurance will have to pay I guess.

Now about the procedure they took the stem cells from my hip bone I think with a drill. My hip was sore for about 2.5 weeks, but nothing noticeable this 3rd week. They separated out the stem cells from my hip bone and injected them in the areas of my knee where I had little to no cartilage or damage. I'm 3 weeks out and I'm noticing some differences but nothing significant yet but I'm not suppose to notice much for 8 weeks anyway. The success rate is suppose to be 75%, now what a doctor considers success and what I consider success may vary a lot. I didn't do the regenexx method but I went to Doctor adrews clinic in Bham AL pretty good clinic or at least all the pro athlete jerseys on the wall are impressive.

I know they are having success with knee replacement but I just couldn't do the knee amputation without trying this first. Yes they cut your leg off and put back together it just freaks me out to think about that doing that. I really hope this works if so I'll get my other knee done. I guess I can sell something else to get that done.

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Brother I hate to tell you this, but I want you to have some additional information. My former shooting buddy (who moved away) was a DR and he had that procedure done by a friend of his at a very reduced rate. I seriously thought about it because I was offered the same discount. My friend really didn't notice much of a difference and certainly not enough to justify another surgery.

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Today's USAToday has an article about Tony Dorsset. The best place is in TX to get them harvested then Mexico for the injection. The TX place actually injects millions of cells. Expensive yest but there is some interesting data. The key is the amount injected.

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James Andrews is probably the best in the world at knee's, elbow's and shoulder's... look at any all-star caliber athlete that blows a joint, and Andrews is the dude putting them back together. If he feels like it is a legit procedure with a relatively high probability of success, I'd be inclined to trust his opinion. Good luck on the recovery.

Edited by tha1000

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Had my knees replaced, right 3 years ago, left 2 years ago. The pain is gone, I have great mobility in my right knee. My right tibia plateau was fractured 16 years ago and I could not walk long distances or stand very much. Now I'm 95% of were I was before the fracture. My left was destroyed by the issues with my right knee.

The left is now 100%. I can run on them, but I don't like to. I can kneel, but don't because of the numbness the surgery caused. It just feels too wierd.

Overall the replacements were a good choice for me. I compete, but I know my limitations. And that's fine. For me it's enough to just be doing the best I can at a match.

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Today's USAToday has an article about Tony Dorsset. The best place is in TX to get them harvested then Mexico for the injection. The TX place actually injects millions of cells. Expensive yest but there is some interesting data. The key is the amount injected.

Adult cells or harvested fetal cells?

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Microfracure Surgery too. I think Bruce Smith was one of the first to get it. It's suppose to make your own body make new cartilage again,

or something to that effect.

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Today's USAToday has an article about Tony Dorsset. The best place is in TX to get them harvested then Mexico for the injection. The TX place actually injects millions of cells. Expensive yest but there is some interesting data. The key is the amount injected.

Adult cells or harvested fetal cells?

The one I know about - They take YOUR blood, separate it, re-inject it

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A buddy of mine had stem cells from his hip bone planted in his hip joints. Several doctors told him he needed both hip joints replaced. He is pain free now. He has grown new bone and cartilage. He was the first person to have the military insurance pay for it. There is a lot of work going on around the world with stem cells. Adult stem cells from the person that is getting the treatment are preferred now. They say they have better results. The rest of the world is way ahead of the US in this because the issue is so politicized here. Around the world they are using stem cells for hips, knees, teeth and eyes. The procedure cost my buddy's insurance 5K per hip. They told him that hip replacement would be 30K each hip. It makes too much sense. We are so eaten up with rice bowls and politics here in the US that we are getting our asses handed to us by other countries and our citizens aren't getting the best, latest treatment options. I say do your own research and see what you think. 4-5K isn't a lot of money if it works. If it does work you have your own body and not some foreign hardware in you.

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They don't have the FDA in Europe which makes it much easier to try experimental procedures on humans.

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Keep the info coming. I have had each knee cleaned up twice. Surgeon said a new one was next. Any updates Biscuit ???

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6 months out and I'm happy with the results, perfect heck no but I'm able to do hard spin classes and heavy leg presses. I had to back off Stressing my knees for about 8 weeks after the procedure. I went from not being able to walking without a limp To being competitive in 1 state and area match this spring. Just need to keep losing weight and building muscle. I have 2 more years now before a new knee in that time new procedures for knee replacement are coming. One is leaving most of your muscle which is super important. Thanks for the input.

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Keep the info coming. I have had each knee cleaned up twice. Surgeon said a new one was next. Any updates Biscuit ???

Sorry to hear about the 2 surgeries. I'm good where I am with my knee, I do best when I'm building muscle and moving the joints without a lot of stress like biking. Stem cell was good for me as I really wasn't in a place where I could deal with rehabbing after knee replacement. To much responsibility in my business right now in my life.

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