We Publish a Low Back Stem Cell Research Paper

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low back stem cell

Despite being the first clinic in the world to inject stem cells into low back discs, we’ve had a piece missing in our research portfolio. We’ve published on knees, hips, shoulders, and other joints, and while we’ve included low back disc cases in our complications papers, we’ve held back on publishing a paper on efficacy. That has now changed with our new low back stem cell research paper on disc bulges. In fact, this is just the first of two papers that we have headed your way.

The History of Low Back Stem Cell Research

Way back when in 2004, I read a research paper that changed everything. A Japanese scientist was able to regenerate degenerated discs in rabbits. As a result, in 2005/2006, as part of an IRB-approved study, I first began to inject severely degenerated discs with same-day stem cells, and when those results were disappointing, I switched out and began to use cultured stem cells. This made me the first doctor on earth to inject stem cells into the discs of patients with low back pain.

Our early experience with injecting discs was not very interesting, as not much happened. I later switched up the protocol by using hypoxic conditioned cells in 2007/2008. The idea at that point was that since the environment of the disc was a tough environment for cells to survive, we would do certain things in culture to choose cells that could survive that harsh environment.

While we’ve published lots of papers since 2005, for some reason we never got a low back stem cell paper out. This changed when we showed our promising data to a small publicly traded company that promptly licensed that tech and began the long process of seeking FDA approval. About two years ago, that company, now called Biorestorative Therapies (ticker BRTX), decided to sponsor bringing our low back disc patients back to Colorado to look at in-depth outcomes and complications. This low back stem cell study was just published. This new study is just part one of a two-part series as we have a second study that includes more patients (33) that will highlight the MRI and outcome results in our registry. We also have another paper on hundreds of patients treated with our novel platelet lysate epidural technique that helps patients avoid harmful low back steroid shots.

The upshot? We’ve been offering low back stem cell injections longer than anyone else on earth, but for some reason we never got around to publishing this data. In the next few months, you’ll see two other low back papers from the Regenexx research team!

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10 thoughts on “We Publish a Low Back Stem Cell Research Paper

  1. carol proud

    I suffered a severe injury at work. A hord of high school students were running to an assembly and crashed into me causing me to fall to the concrete walkway and hitting my back, head and hands. I have had extensive assessments from four othro. Spinal injections recommended as well as surgery. The injections lasted two months; I am high risk as a surgical patient; and my life is on hold due to excessive pain and contortions in both legs, feet and hand.

    Can your procedure help me?

    1. Regenexx Team Post author


      So sorry to hear that! What type of spinal injections did you receive? I ask because the most common spinal injections are steroid injections and epidurals which escalate the situation rather than help. Please see: https://regenexx.com/steroid-injection-risks/. Yours sounds like a very complex situation. We’d be glad to examine you or do a Candidacy Eval by phone, as we’d need to see MRI’s take a full medical history, etc to weight in. https://regenexx.com/the-regenexx-procedures/back-surgery-alternative/


    Very good news!111 Why aren’t more MD’s aware of these results and recommending to thier patients?

    1. Regenexx Team Post author


      Thanks! For the most part they don’t know it’s available. It also doesn’t fit well into the current system of Check Box Medicine. Please see: https://regenexx.com/blog/the-least-common-denominator-paradox/

  3. Sandra Schneider

    I’ve had a failed laminectomy- over 20 years ago. I’ve been told that my only option is fusion at the L5-S1 level. However, I also have a bulging disc at L4-L5 and I’m afraid the stress after fusion will cause that to get worse. Would someone in my circumstances still be a candidate for your therapy?

    1. Regenexx Team Post author

      Your concern is well founded. Fusion very rarely makes the situation better in the long run. While the sections of vertebrae the laminectomy removed can’tbe replaced, there are different ways to alleviate pain and improve function. https://regenexx.com/blog/neck-epidural-failed/ We’d be glad to take a look at your MRI’s etc to see if your particular situation would be a good Candidate for A Regenexx procedure. Please submit the Candidate form. https://regenexx.com/the-regenexx-procedures/back-surgery-alternative/

  4. Larry

    Have you published anything on stem cell implants on the S I joint and lower back.

    1. Regenexx Team Post author


      We’ve treated an awful lot of SI joints, but no, we haven’t yet published an SI Paper. Here is the Published research page: https://regenexx.com/stem-cell-research/ You might find these of interest: https://regenexx.com/blog/si-joint-fusion/ https://regenexx.com/blog/si-joint-fusion-results/ https://regenexx.com/the-regenexx-procedures/back-surgery-alternative/

  5. Stephen Mull

    I just finished a first round of Regenexx SCP/Prolotherapy on my L5-S1, L4-L5, and L3-L4 disks, etc. My MRIs look surprisingly similar to those of patients four and five in this study.

    My question is, regardless of government dicta, is it ethical to do a “placebo-controlled” investigation, given the degenerating nature of DDD? If I’d had 50 million stem cells into my disks five years ago, I might not have the problems I now have. Is it ethical to force people to wait for treatment, given that their untreated condition is degenerating, and there is evidence of no adverse long term treatment outcome ?

    1. Regenexx Team Post author


      I understand your concern! This paper looked at the long-term outcome of patients treated 4-6 years earlier as part of a different study. In the double-blinded study proposed, the patients would not be waiting 4-6 years before the treatment was available to them!

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