Regenerative medicine is basically a process of Engineering or Regenerating human or animal cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function of the body. The branch of Regenerative medicine is growing in leaps and bounds with a lot of research and studies going all around the world.
Does Regenerative medicine has any role to play in treatment of Chronic pain conditions?
The answer is Definitely “YES”
- Non invasive technique
- No side effects of medications like pain killers or steroids
- No hospitalization required, day care procedure
- Treats the actual cause of pain
- Absolutely safe as its prepared from the patients own tissues.
So how does Regenerative medicine actually help in treatment of these conditions?
The basic problem which underlies these painful conditions is the ineffective healing process at the painful site. Regenerative medicine is a well recognized Non invasive treatment method which stimulates the natural healing process of the body and potentiates regeneration of the damaged tissues like cartilage, ligaments and tendons. This process occurs due to the release of various growth factors[ Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1), Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF), Platelet-Derived Growth Factor (PDGF), Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF), Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF)] at the site of injection which initially produce controlled aseptic inflammation followed by the regeneration of the cells and collagen tissues.
A few sessions of Regenerative therapy helps avoid a potential surgery and helps to get back to the routine life at the earliest.
Various Painful conditions where it can be used include
What are the Different types of Regenerative therapies available?
Platelet rich plasma as the name suggests is a plasma which is rich in Platelets which is a component of blood involved in clotting of blood. However, platelets are also rich in various aforementioned growth factors which potentiate the natural healing process of the body.
Along with the Platelets, This injectate contains a number of proteins that can potentially decrease inflammation, reduce pain and improve tissue healing. Thus PRP is a safe, biocompatible, autologous biological product engineered from patients own blood which contains a cocktail of concentrated growth factors and healing factors, stem cell markers and bioactive proteins vital for tissue repair.
Various Types of PRP’s are available which are used in specific conditions which is decided by Doctor after examination. These include
- Leucocyte rich PRP( LR PRP)
- Leucocyte poor PRP( LP PRP): White blood cells responsible for inflammation are removed with the help of special filter
- Hylo PRP: Combination of Hyaluronic acid and LP PRP
- Activated PRP
- Platelet lysate
Other cell-based therapies work very similarly to platelet-rich plasma injections, but involve other types of human cells.
- Bone marrow aspirate concentrate (BMAC, and also known as "bone marrow therapy") is a cell-based treatment produced from bone marrow cells. The bone marrow is usually collected from a person’s hip bones.
- Adipose (fat) tissue therapy uses fat cells taken from a person’s abdomen or thigh. (This process is completely unrelated to liposuction or other cosmetic surgeries performed by plastic surgeons.)
Both PRP and cell-based therapies are often injected using imaging assistance, such as ultrasound. Ultrasound-guided injections help doctors localize the affected area and give targeted treatment.Prolotherapy:
Prolotherapy also called as Proliferation therapy involves injection of an irritant solution in the degenerated joint, tendons or ligaments of the body. These irritant solutions produce localised inflammation followed by potentiation of healing process in the tissues and thus help in the repair process of the tissues. 6-8 sessions of these injections need to b e done to get the required results.
Most commonly, hyperosmolar dextrose (a sugar) is the solution used; glycerine, lidocaine (a commonly used local anesthetic), phenol, and sodium morrhuate (a derivative of cod liver oil extract) are other commonly used agents