NORWOOD DAY SURGERY, Adelaide
For anyone who has ever suffered from joint or arthritic pain, you know how debilitating it can be and what an impact it can have on your everyday life. Norwood Day Surgery in Adelaide is the centre for stem cell excellence and has some exciting news for sufferers of chronic knee pain about how stem cell therapy is being used to help sufferers of this condition.
Since beginning stem cell treatments in 2012, Norwood Day Surgery has treated hundreds of patients for osteoarthritis, knee and hip pain, and other degenerative neurological conditions.
Stem cell therapy is the first treatment for osteoarthritis that positively improves existing tissue and does not destroy joint tissue. Stem cell therapy has a strong safety record demonstrated for many years and is a safe and highly effective way of reducing and in some cases completely eliminating osteoarthritic pain.
What is stem cell therapy?
Stem cell therapy is the use of your body’s own stem cells to repair a joint. The procedure involves four main steps:
- Cells are extracted using a mini liposuction procedure, by which fat tissue is extracted.
- This is then put through a process called ultrasonic cavitation, which removes all tissue except stem cells and other growth cells. The remaining cells are known as Stromal Vascular Faction (SVF) cells.
- The SVF cells are tested for quality to ensure your stem cell procedure stands the best chance of success.
- The SVF cells are injected back into your body either through an intravenous (IV) line, or injected directly into the joint using ultrasound technology to guide the injection.
Follow up appointments are required up to six months after a stem cell procedure to monitor patient progress and assess mobility, movement and overall improvement.
Results to date
In a recent study conducted at Norwood Day Surgery, 29 patients suffering osteoarthritis of the knee were treated with stem cell therapy and assessed each month for six months. The treatment goal for participants was to reduce pain and improve joint function. The exciting news for sufferers of chronic knee pain is:
Over 80% of patients treated showed a significant improvement between 50 – 100% in pain and mobility of the joint.
Factors including the age of the patient appeared to have no bearing on the effectiveness of the treatment. Young or old, the improvement after receiving stem cell therapy was reportedly similar, indicating that stem cell treatment can be equally effective for a broad range of patients.
When compared with traditional treatments for osteoarthritis of the knee, stem cell therapy also came out a winner. Traditional treatments including; Glucosamine and Chondroitin, Viscosupplementation and Arthroscopic Surgery, often reported no overall benefit and patients sometimes reported a range of adverse side effects from these procedures.
There have been no reported serious adverse reactions observed as a result of stem cell treatment. Minor reactions have been observed in approximately ten percent of patients. These reactions include; flushing, heart palpitations (for a few minutes after the injection), and slightly raised temperature shortly following the injection. Possible complications are infection, bruising and bleeding from the liposuction area and transient pain in the injected joint.
As stem cell therapy treatment is reasonably new, it is too early to determine the lifespan of the treatment. To date only twenty per cent of patients at Norwood Day Surgery have needed a second treatment.
Patients do need to be aware that the repair process takes time. The majority of participants reported improvement at its maximum level by six months.
So if chronic knee pain caused by osteoarthritis is impacting your everyday life, consider stem cell therapy to bring a spring back into your step.