When Stem Cells Fail…

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when stem cells fail

For transparency, as promised yesterday, I decided to blog on a case treated with the Regenexx-C stem cell that didn’t respond. I also want to give fair play to the concept that a stem cell procedure ins’t magic and sometimes doesn’t help. In this case, the patient was treated 2 years ago and this report is from his two year follow-up. As I have said in the past, we track all of our patients in a proprietary database and have two full time employees dedicated to keeping track of and publishing this data. Unlike the successful patient from Qatar, he is a rancher from Australia. RP is 65 years old and had severe knee arthritis, unstable ligaments,  as well as elevated serum lipids. In addition a confounding factor was that his low back had a pinched nerve that was contributing to his knee pain (but not the sole cause). While he noticed some improvements in his shoulder rotator cuff he noted no improvements in the knee. It still swelled like it used to when carrying things or walking downhill. Was there a difference between these two patients? Yes, the non-responder had more severe arthritis. While the Regenexx-C procedure is less sensitive to severity (meaning that many patients with more severe arthritis generally do as well as patients with less severe arthritis), we believe that when the arthritis is very severe, it can make a difference. In addition, it’s also possible to be placed in the GOOD category and have the procedure not work. What other things have we seen that reduce the likelihood of success? A metabolic syndrome (high triglycerides, high blood pressure, and extra weight) and perscription medications (often used to treat the metabolic syndrome) are also two other things we feel that negatively impact outcome. In this case there was also an early metabolic syndrome. The upshot? We put all of the data out there when we have it and aren’t afraid to talk about the patients that fail treatment. We belive this transparency is an important part of developing a new medical procedure.

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