Late last year we hired a new cell biologist. After a few weeks on the job, it was clear that her back was killing her and her leg was numb. She was miserable and having trouble sitting in front of the sterile hoods. As she tells the story, “I was getting up from the kitchen table and my legs just went out from under me and I was in excruciating pain. I had tingling in my legs and was very numb, especially in my right leg. At its worst, the pain was at a 10 and I had lost all feeling in my right leg, all the way down to my foot and through my toes. ” We tried traditional then specialized epidurals to help her pain, but she would only get temporary relief. Her MRI showed a fairly good sized right sided disc bulge at L5-S1 with a large tear in the back of the disc. It was either surgery to cut out the back of the disc and lose her to months of rehab or offer to try the same stem cells she was culturing everyday. She chose to have the Regenexx-C procedure and here is her result:
“The pain gradually decreased in intensity over a period of about 6 months but was still present at the time of my re-injection. At the time of my re-injection in January, my pain was at about a 5-7 and I felt relief within the 1st week of treatment. My pain at its worst now is a 1 or 2 and it’s rare that I have any pain at all. I have regained all feeling in my right leg and foot as well. “
Her films above show how the disc has decreased in size. The films above are the axial slices (you saw in half view). The top row above shows the disc in the white dashed circles, before on the left and after on the right. The bottom row of pictures above is an additional close up on the disc with the little double arrow measuring the extent of the disc.
The films below are matched sagittal slices, where the body is split from front to back. The white dashed circle shows the disc bulge which is easily seen in the left before picture, but not in the right after picture.
In conclusion, we practice what we preach, meaning we feel confident about the safety and efficacy of the Regenexx procedure to help treat disc bulges without surgery, so much that the people growing the cells don’t hesitate to use those cells to fix their own problems! As discussed in other blogs, the problem with surgically removing the back of this disc would mean that the disc would be weakened. We believe the Regenexx-C procedure allows us to strengthen the back of the disc while getting rid of the disc bulge.
This patient was treated with the Regenexx-C (cultured stem cell injections). Please note that not every disc bulge patient we treat can expect these same results.