Helping a Runner Run with Stem Cells

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Helping a runner with knee stem cells…  JC is an active 66 year old runner who was seen by us at the end of May with a four year history of knee pain. He had an arthroscopic debridement in 2007 with a partial menisectomy (part of the meniscus removed) which helped for awhile, but the knee started to worsen in early this year. The patient had tried Hyaluronic acid injections and physical therapy. His knee exam demonstrated a displaced meniscus and significant cartilage loss, so he was told he was a reasonable candidate for the Regenexx-AD procedure. The goal of this procedure is to not only add stem cells to the areas where cartilage is wearing down, but also to buttress the meniscus to prevent further displacement of this important shock absorber out of the joint. Here is his description of results:

I’m happy to provide an update.  I remain extremely pleased with my outcome from the Regenexx procedure and your skill with the needle.  I guess if I had to put a percentage on my improvement, I would put it at 90%.  Although I was able to walk by the time I arrived in Broomfield, I went 3 weeks without being able to walk at all.  I was certain my running days were over.  All of the doctors I consulted gave me the same grim prognosis, and I was ready to sign up for knee replacement surgery just to get it behind me.  I was  vaguely aware of the promise of stem cell therapy, and found Regenexx through my own internet research.  I figured my knee was too far gone to benefit, but decided to follow through with my previously-scheduled telephone consultation with Dr. Schultz.  He was not at all reassuring in his prognosis.  But I figured I had nothing to loose but money, and if the new procedure didn’t work, I could always get the knee replacement.  So I flew to Colorado from my current home in Albania.

I am again running regularly and normally.  In fact, I’m signed up for a race  tomorrow.  I have also taken up hiking again.  Albania has rugged mountains and I have had no problems hiking all day with a day pack.

The knee is not 100%, and sometimes it feels slightly unstable.  I sense that pivoting on it would  not be good.  I still wear the Breg brace when running or hiking on uneven ground.  I am not sure  it is necessary, but it seems like a prudent practice, reducing the chance of twisting something.

In some ways, the knee is better than it has been in years.  I notice that it no longer pops and cracks when I stand up.  It used to be that keeping  it still for a long time, for example when driving, it would be very stiff when I got out of the car.  That is no longer the case.  I’m not sure why, but I interpret it as  a sign of better joint health.

We wish JC many more miles!

Learn about Regenexx procedures for knee conditions.
Chris Centeno, MD is a specialist in regenerative medicine and the new field of Interventional Orthopedics. Centeno pioneered orthopedic stem cell procedures in 2005 and is responsible for a large amount of the published research on stem cell use for orthopedic applications. View Profile

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NOTE: 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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