Stem cells have many uses in healing – but in sports medicine, this treatment is often used to help speed up the recovery period after an injury. The most effective and efficient way to harness stem cells is by retrieving the cells from the patient’s own body, usually the bone marrow. This is usually done via the hip.
During the procedure, the doctor harvests the cells, and then they are sent to a laboratory for processing. Once they are prepared, the stem cells are injected directly into the site of injury to assist with tissue regeneration and to reduce pain and inflammation.
Stem cell therapy may be implemented to treat musculoskeletal injuries affecting the tendons, ligaments, muscles, and cartilage. Stem cell therapy is therefore very popular among athletes today. Let’s talk about how this procedure works, what is involved in recovery after receiving stem cell therapy, and where you can go for this revolutionary treatment.
How Do Stem Cells Help with Injuries?
Stem cells are naturally able to divide and duplicate themselves in response to what the body needs. They have the ability to differentiate into cells that form any type of cell in the body, and this treatment is particularly successful in addressing injury to the soft tissues and joint structures.
For example, in the case of an Achilles tendon injury, stem cells are injected directly into the site of the injury to develop healthy tendon cells.
In addition to their use in injury healing and repair, stem cells may also be used to speed up recovery after surgery. Joint replacement patients in particular can enjoy a faster recovery from the surgery after receiving stem cell therapy.
Because the stem cells which are used in stem cell therapy come from the patient’s own body, there is no risk of rejection by the immune system. Although experts disagree, and some think that it is better to utilize stem cells from umbilical cord blood (after a live birth, per the written permission of the mother), others have observed the high level of efficiency and adaptive utility of a person’s own stem cells.
Recovery from Stem Cell Therapy
Spoiler alert: The great thing about stem cell therapy is that there is little or no downtime required. If you are recovering from an injury, you will need to give yourself some time to recover as per usual – however, stem cell therapy itself does not interfere with your activity whatsoever. You may return to work or school the day after the procedure.
After the procedure, patients can usually walk out of the clinic on their own. Only local anesthesia is used, so there’s no grogginess to be expected.
Within two to three weeks, once the stem cells develop in place and take hold, the patient should begin to see an improvement in their symptoms when recovering from the injury. As the weeks go by, a continual improvement is to be expected.
Stem Cell Therapy and Sports Medicine in Austin, TX
Here at All-Star Orthopedics of Austin, our medical team performs therapy with stem cells on athletes who need to recover quickly and get back in the game. Schedule a consultation with us so we can conduct an assessment of your condition and answer any questions you have about this treatment.
To schedule an appointment, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (512) 346-4933 or by filling out our easy-to-use online request form. We look forward to serving you!