Severe Hip Arthritis treated with Stem cells: Two Year Update

By Chris Centeno, MD /

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hip arthritis treated with stem cells

As we pride ourselves in discussing all aspects of our results, today I’d like to discuss a patient with severe hip arthritis treated with stem cells who had a time limited result. CS is a middle aged woman who has post-polio syndrome with severe hip arthritis. In fact, there wasn’t much left of the hip when she was first seen in clinic several years ago. She ultimately underwent several Regenexx-C stem cell procedures to treat her hip arthritis and she did well, reporting about 80% relief of her pain for about 2 years. She recently contacted us that because the pain was beginning to return. It’s likely she’ll need another treatment. So let’s explore what may have happened in this patient with a very weak lower body due to her illness and very severe hip arthritis. Did the stem cells magically grow her a new hip? No. We have seen MRI evidence in select patients with severe hip arthritis that using the Regenexx-C stem cell procedure did seem to establish a joint space where none existed before, but this was far from growing the patient a brand new hip. Why did the effects of the Regenexx-C stem cell procedure only last about two years? We’ve seen duration of effects lasting up to 4-5 years, but have no data beyond that at this point. There may be several reasons why this patient may have been a shorter term responder. One is that the hip arthritis is very severe. For the most part continued analysis of Regenexx-C patient outcomes show that knee and hip arthritis patients respond independent of severity-meaning patients with more severe arthritis seem to do as well as those less severe arthritis. However, this amount of severe arthritis due to the polio was more than we would usually encounter. Another reason for the shorter term response may be that the hip was severely unstable due to the weakness in the hip girdle muscles, so this is a hip with substantially more ongoing wear and tear than other hips. The upshot? Again, we pride ourselves in being frank with patients about what stem cells as a tool can or can’t deliver. In this case, while it’s great that we were able to give this patient two years of dramatic relief when she had few other hip surgery alternatives, it looks like she’ll need re-treatment of the hip.

NOTE:  Regenexx-C is a medical procedure and like all medical procedures has a success and failure rate.   The Regenexx-C procedure licensed by RegenexxCayman is not approved by the U.S. FDA for use in the United States.  RegenexxCayman is an independently owned and operated medical services provider operating exclusively in the Cayman Islands and is not part of or affiliated with the Centeno-Schultz Clinic or any U.S. Regenexx Network provider.

Chris Centeno, MD

Regenexx Founder

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.
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