Stem cells injected to treat thumb arthritis
Larry is a 60 year old male with severe arthritis in his CMC joint (base of thumb). He was unable to button his own shirt due to pain. I think this patient update is a good follow-up to the last blog, which discussed surgically removing a wrist bone to treat thumb arthritis (the space fills in with scar tissue). He was offered surgical options, but chose to have his own adult stem cells injected into the joint rather than surgery. This morning he reported 90% improvement at 6 months after his procedure, and the ability to button his shirt again. We had Larry at a FAIR candidate for the procedure (we use GOOD, FAIR, POOR for patients who are considering the procedure), which to us means that while the procedure may be successful, there is a significant chance of failure. We continue to grade patients for the procedure more pessimistically than is likely necessary, because we believe that until we have more data analyzed, it’s better to stay conservative. Also realize that Larry had no surgery, only an x-ray guided injection pre-injection and then injection of his own stem cells, with limited downtime. He wore a splint for a week after the injection, but had no prolonged immobilization. We will continue to track Larry’s outcomes, but his results are consistent with other patients we have treated for thumb arthritis. However, not all patients with thumb arthritis can expect the same results.
(Please note, this patient was treated with the Regenexx-C cultured stem cell procedure and not Regenexx-SD. While Regenexx-SD does rely on the same stem cell type that was used to treat these patients and other clinics have reported good results using similar procedures that don’t rely on stem cell culturing, Regenexx-SD clinical effectiveness has not yet been established.)Learn about Regenexx procedures for hand & wrist conditions.