4 Years after a Knee Stem Cell Injection for Arthritis and Still Improving

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knee stem cell injection for arthritis

4 years after a knee stem cell injection for arthritis, and still improving…  We’ve been using stem cells to treat our patients for a long time, so many of our patients are now years out from their treatments. NH is one such patient who received the Regenexx-C stem cell procedure for her arthritic knee in 2008.  Though not everyone’s experience will be the same, it’s likely best for her to tell her own story, so here’s an e-mail she recently sent to Dr. Schultz about her stem cell knee experience.

“When I first came to Dr Centeno’s clinic in 2008 I was the product of a left knee surgery gone awfully wrong which I had in May of 2006.  After knee repair to correct what looked like shredded cartilage my pain and inability to function increased beyond my worse nightmare.  Before knee surgery I could at least walk, although when I got in and out of vehicles I had to be very careful because I could get excruciating knee pain.  It also happened when I danced, not right away but “from out of the blue.” The pain was so intensive it made me as white as a sheet.  But I still could walk and live a normal life.  In my job I was walking about 9 miles per day before this left knee surgery.  And I could stand up (bear weight on my knee) without wishing I could sit down.  In fact I was not impacted by weight bearing.  I never gave it a second thought.  After knee surgery my cartilage in my left knee decreased fairly rapidly to zero where I could not walk more than a few hundred feet per day max and every step was extremely painful.  I would step out of the car and try to figure out how many feet I had to walk, and could I manage it.   And I had to quit my job.  After less than one year after left knee surgery, even walking a few hundred feet was very painful and that is all of the walking I felt  I could do in a day.  I was almost measuring these few hundred feet and saving them so I could walk from the curb to the grocery store, then use the electric cart to do my shopping or just get some chores done around the house.   I tried injections of synovial fluid.  It did not help my left knee although I had significant improvement in my right knee.  Then the physician gave me cortizone injections in the left knee and it caused me to gain about 15 pounds within 3 weeks and I had real trouble reducing these increased pounds and realized a couple of years later that this induced insulin resistance.  I am convinced of it.  In 2008 I learned of Dr. Centeno’s clinic and I had stem cell treatment.  My total recovery was slow.  Provided I don’t climb up and down stairs and don’t step up on too many curbs per day, and don’t carry two much I could walk without a wheel chair.  I didn’t walk too far.  I came to measure my walking abilities by how many times I could walk around stores the size of Costco.  At first it was one store once or twice a week and normal walking around the house and office (but not excessive walking).  That was a great achievement for me.  Gradually it became about 3 stores by 2009, and now in 2012 I can step up over occasional curbs – still avoiding the steps so I don’t have to curtail my walking.  I went with my step daughters to Alligator Land in Oct of 2012 and walked from 2 to 5 in the afternoon barely stopping at a normal walking pace.  After that it took my knee 3 weeks to recover back to normal. Although now I didn’t curb my activities, just experienced more pain while doing those activities.  What is normal?  I can take a break every hour and walk about 100 yards each time at least 6 times per day.  I can walk the equivalent of 6 to 7 stores the size of Costco several times per week.  I walk through xxx Mall and back to the car once or twice.  Walk from the parking garage to my car – another 300 yards.  I can also greet customers at the front door a few times per day.  Probably walking another 1,000 feet each time.  And I can visit a bunch of smaller stores and restaurants.  When I travel by air, I no longer need the wheel chair.  I haven’t used the wheel chair for travel since July of 2012.  I take small strolls here and there – not to far, maybe a couple of thousand feet.  However, I believe that at 61 years old in just a few days, that I am still consistently improving.  For one year now I I have been following a mostly vegan lifestyle to reduce my cholesterol (dropping the fish and dairy so I can lose weight), taking hemp and flax seeds, eating soy and lots of beans. I believe that for the most part I am reducing the cortisol that increased from receiving the cortizone shots and slowly my body is losing those pounds.)  I do hope your clinic can continue to give patients the “gift” of their own stem cells implanted as this has proven such a blessing to me.  I am overwhelmed at the continued increments of improvement that I am continuing to experience.  At first you think it is not much, but it continues to improve.  I am almost observing that when I “overdo” my walking sometimes, that eventually I can increase my walking over time although this could be me imagining things.   I cannot run and dance – at least not yet, and may never be able to again – but I am leaving a lifestyle that is unhindered because I am able to walk without thinking about whether or not I can do it.  I can walk fast, even out walk my husband for small spurts.   For the last several months I have added carrying a back pack around instead of using a purse.  This way I can carry more stuff.  I estimate that I can carry about 10 pounds and I am now increasing my aerobic activity because I wear it anytime I leave the office or house.  At first I noticed I was breathing heavier but now my breathing is normal.  That is my latest improvement.  I am now able to bear more weight. I can stand up for longer periods of time, especially if I move a little.  I cannot add the computer to my backpack yet as it’s too heavy and it impacts my knee.  I can also carry n the lighter grocery bags which I couldn’t do before without impacting my knee.  When my knee is impacted it takes me longer to walk within a more comfortable zone.  When it is impacted the pain on walking is increased but I can still do it if I want to bear the pain.  Most of the time I am so busy at work I don’t feel my the pain.

 Please use this testimony for any reason to promote your good work.”

NOTE:  Any case reports or patient results presented on this web-site are not indicative of all patient results. Like any medical procedure, all Regenexx procedures have a success and failure rate.

This blog post provides general information to help the reader better understand regenerative medicine, musculoskeletal health, and related subjects. All content provided in this blog, website, or any linked materials, including text, graphics, images, patient profiles, outcomes, and information, are not intended and should not be considered or used as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please always consult with a professional and certified healthcare provider to discuss if a treatment is right for you.

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