This week, I would like to comment on an article initially published by the prestigious BMJ (Spanish Journal of Muscles and Bones) in English and also recently in Spanish (by El Nuevo Herald) discussing the controversial topic about the inefficiency of arthroscopy surgery.
Arthroscopy is a very popular operation that attempts to repair the meniscus and damaged cartilage through small incisions with the assistance of a video camera. It is performed more than 700,000 times a year, mostly in the knee. However, about 15 recent medical studies (conducted on more than 1,700 patients) show that the operation does not provide relief or improve joint function and furthermore, shows multiple complications such as infections, which can be very serious. All this at the astronomical cost of more than 3 billion dollars!
About 14 years ago, I started working in the field of what is now known as Regenerative Medicine or Ortho-Biological Medicine. In these 14 years, I pleasantly observed how the field has developed and also how the treatments are becoming more and more successful, but this level of success is only guaranteed based on the actual quality of the product being used.
Using top quality Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) as well as the Autologous Stem Cells obtained for the treatment is of utmost importance for the overall effectiveness of the treatment. Our StemCell Miami institute has had so much success over the years, strictly because we always strive to provide our patients with the best quality autologous Ortho-Biological products. For example, we have our Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) which is extracted from one’s own blood with a special process and used in cases of chronic inflammations in tendons and bursae (either in the shoulder, hip, knee or foot). As long as the PRP is double-spun on a special PRP machine (like ours), you have a 90% chance of improvement.
The ligamentization process is frustrating because it is an unseen rate limiting step in an athlete’s recovery. Some athletes regain motion, strength, and proprioception at the six-month mark and appear outwardly healed, but the level of ligamentization of their graft is unknown and therefore a return to sport can jeopardize their recovery. For this reason, it is ideal to allow athletes recovering from ACL reconstruction as much time for rehabilitation as logistically possible, assuming it doesn’t jeopardize their return to sport timeline. Many instances of ACL reconstruction failure can be attributed to a failure of graft incorporation and/or the ligamentization process, so giving the athlete adequate time for recovery is best.
Recently, I experienced one of those days that made me feel very proud about the use of stem cells. It would have been accurately described as “a perfect game”, just like my friend, stem cell patient, and famous baseball player Tony “Tany” Perez, often would say.
Of the 12 patients I examined yesterday (6 weeks after the implantation of their stem cells and as required by our protocol), all of them responded extremely positively to their treatments and none of them had any reported adverse side-effects. I reiterate (as I have done numerous times in the past) that these amazing results are somewhat unusual and basically unparalleled, even when compared to modern medicine standards.
Like I have consistently mentioned on many of my previous articles, the unlimited capacities of autologous stem cells and platelets never ceases to amaze me.
While at our StemCell Miami Institute (one of the few in the world) we specialize in treating orthopedic related illnesses like: osteoarthritis of the knee, hip, shoulder and issues related to the spine, there are times when we also try to help patients in need of treatments that are outside of the “true realm” of our medical specialty. Such is the case with Denisse, a close family friend and owner of a busy Nicaraguan restaurant in the city of Doral, where she unfortunately poured (by accident) a pot of hot oil all over the back of her legs, causing her a painful second degree type burn.
In my opinion, one of the hardest things to accept is a new type of medical treatment, particularly when it changes the philosophy, parameters and overall results that we are expecting and basically used to receiving. Stem cells are undoubtedly, no exception to this rule.
About 6 weeks ago, Eduardo K (a Cuban doctor with a master’s degree from the University of Pittsburg in internal medicine and nephrology), brought his wife Maria to our institute, in order to assess the possibility of using stem cells to cure the severe chronic pain in her ankle. A pain so severe, that it was basically hindering her ability to walk and Dr. K also expressed his extreme hesitation & concerns about having his wife be involved in an invasive ankle surgery at this stage of her adult life.
Two days ago, I read a letter from my colleagues at the American Association of Pain Management Physicians, which reported that as of July 2016, (in the state of Oregon), blockages to control pains were denied coverage by several insurance companies. Instead, the Oregon health authorities have recommended the use of therapeutic massages and acupuncture in lieu of blockages.
This decision is unfortunately no joke, but rather only one of many examples of an oblivious & retrograde type mentality, and basically serves to clearly demonstrate how our great country continues to “lose ground” every day in the healthcare arena. Regrettably, this antiquated mindset ultimately causes mediocrity to take over many of our medical institutions, under the indifference of many and under the complicity of others.
With all due respect to the ancient art of acupuncture and the technique of therapeutic massages, these treatments are only proven to represent a viable (temporary) alternative for moderate pain control, but never as a true solution to treat any type of chronic pain.
I have spent almost 15 years researching new alternatives for the treatment of chronic and perennial pain. I have explored many treatments from blockages, therapies, pills and injections, to what I now call: The Medical Revolution of the 21st Century: Stem Cells.
If someone would ask me: “Why use stem cells?” I would explain to them that it is a very effective way to control pain, and is a medical treatment alternative that is basically unparalleled nowadays. These incredibly powerful cells (of which our body is organically armed with from birth) have the important function of regenerating and repairing damaged tissue, regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, or even age.
For example, last week I met with Berthy, a 65-year-old woman treated with a successful marrow and fat stem cell transplant to treat her severe arthritis related knee pain we conducted about 4 months ago. During her visit, Berthy recounted that she had recently accompanied her husband to a renowned clinic in South Florida, where the issue of stem cell use had arisen, and the doctor at the medical institution had told her: “they only work on patients up to 50 years old.” She immediately showed him her knee and told him that at age 67, she was perfectly fine after her recent stem cell transplant. The doctor was astonished, and with a shrug he replied, “they must know more and have more experience than we do in that area.” Berthy is currently arranging a trip with her husband to travel to Asia and realize their dream of walking The Great Wall of China.
We as a society must begin to “think big,” and focus on the future and support the latest advances of modern medicine. Also, we as patients should demand the right to be offered the most advanced treatments and not simply resign ourselves to a health authority mandate or a medical professional that would impose an ineffective or mediocre type treatment.
We could speculate on the reasons behind the Oregon insurance situation, but the reality is that it is far better to look to the future and demand the option of extensive stem cell application, recognizing it as a feasible and true solution to treat arthritis of the joints and the spine. To that fight, which is really “thinking big” … we must all unite!
So if you, a family member, or friend need to be evaluated to find out if Stem cell treatments are a viable option, please call us at (305) 598-7777. Remember that by mentioning this article the first consultation is free. If you want to contact the doctor directly, please do so via email: email@example.com or for more information visit our website: www.stemcellmia.com or follow us on our Facebook Page & Twitter @StemCellMia or you can also watch our amazing testimonial videos on our YouTube channel.
Jeannine C. is a licensed Zumba instructor that currently resides in Key Largo, Florida. Approximately a year ago, she started suffering from a progressive pain on her right knee, that (unfortunately) even after engaging in multiple physical therapy sessions and taking endless pain medications, the excruciating knee pain continued to bother her, to the point that she had to stop undertaking in her “true life’s passion”: being a Zumba class instructor.
Jeannine first decided to seek the advice of a medical professional / orthopedic surgeon, which after evaluating her condition, quickly recommended that she needed to undergo a complete knew replacement surgery. The almost devastating news, left Jeanine in a sad state of total despair & hopelessness, since she understood that having such type of invasive procedure, also required an extensive post-surgery rehabilitation process and strenuous physical therapy sessions.
In addition, having this type of surgery would ultimately mean that Jeannine would not be able to teach her beloved Zumba classes for an extended period of time, since she would basically have to “learn how to walk properly” with her new prosthetic / knee implant.
Furthermore, she was extremely concerned about the many possible complications and adverse post-surgery reactions including: lung blood clogs, possibly developing a myriad of dangerous infections and/or concerns of adverse type reactions to undergoing general anesthesia etc.
To make matters worse, the orthopedic surgeon also clearly explained to Jeannine that there was a rather unfortunate possibility that (even after the surgery) she would not to be able to conduct her Zumba classes to the full extent or level of high intensity that she was used to before, due the likelihood of risking an early “wear and tear” type complication, loosening of the newly implanted prosthesis, or even the dangerous risk of this surgery causing Metalosis (a putative medical condition involving deposition and build-up of metal debris in the soft tissues of the body. Metalosis has been hypothesized to occur when metallic components in medical implants, specifically joint replacements, abrade against one another and could cause an adverse toxic reaction in the body).
Fortunately, Jeanine had recently heard about the amazing results that one of her Zumba students had experienced with a recent Stem Cell transplant in her knee, which allowed this student (only 6 months after her implant) to not only almost eliminate all pain related issues, but also helped to greatly improve her level of mobility and overall muscular strength, positively enough that she was encouraged to return to her usual (rather strenuous) physical regimen, including re-attending her Zumba sessions!
So Jeannine (after hearing the amazing testimony of her student) started vigorously researching about Autologous Stem Cell treatments and nearby medical institutions (to her Key Largo hometown) where these innovative procedures where being conducted. Luckily, Jeannine quickly learned about Dr. Ramon Castellanos and his proven track record (of almost 15 years) successfully conducting this type of orthopedic procedure and thus, quickly arranged to have the StemCell Miami team evaluate her painful condition.
After her initial consultation and thoroughly evaluating all her medical records and most recent MRI, Dr. Castellanos and his team of experts unanimously determined that she was an ideal candidate to have her own Stem Cells transplanted into her injured knee, and that is exactly what occurred at our institute early yesterday morning.
What we are expecting to happen after Jeannine’s procedure, is that her own newly transplanted stem cells would quickly start identifying the damaged tissue / cartilage area (what I often colloquially refer to as a “bump in the road” in the case of the damaged cartilage) and then having these new cells integrate with her old damaged cells (currently in a dormant state of hibernation) and basically just “bring them back to life!”
In other words, basically “wake the old cells up”, so they can start regenerating the damaged cartilage in her knee and consequently, basically healing the impaired knee naturally (identically to what happened to her Zumba student).
So if you, a friend or family member would like to learn more about Regenerative Medicine, PRP & Stem Cell treatments, please contact StemCell Miami at: (305) 598-7777 to schedule a consultation. For additional information, you can visit our website: www.stemcellmia.com or subscribe to our YouTube channel @Stemcellmiami, or also follow us on Facebook & Twitter. If you would like to ask the doctor a specific question, please do so via his direct e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Earlier today, I was talking to a patient (Victorio) in the procedure room, while extracting his stem cells from bone marrow and fat. This procedure is performed under “conscious sedation”, which means that the patient is awake during the entire procedure (and is under no pain), unlike the case when using general anesthesia during a surgery. During this time, the patient is fully capable to speak with the doctor, as he is guided through the complete procedure. For many people, this is a great advantage to surgery, which many times is rather invasive and the patient is completely unaware of what going on and also possess the risk of anesthesia induced negative side-effects.
We had already successfully implanted Victorio’s stem cells on his right shoulder two years ago and since then, he had successfully recovered his mobility (almost completely) and without the need to undergo a complicated and invasive surgery.
Esta mañana conversaba con un paciente (Victorio) en el salón de procedimientos, mientras extraía sus células madre de médula ósea y grasa. El procedimiento que se realiza bajo “sedación consciente” es totalmente indoloro y el paciente nunca pierde la conciencia, como sucede con el uso de la anestesia general. En otras palabras, el paciente yace confortablemente sin sentir dolor, hablando con el doctor mientras este realiza tranquilamente el procedimiento de extracción de células madre. ¡Otro milagro de la medicina moderna aplicado en el campo de la Medicina Regenerativa con células madre!
Curiosamente, a Victorio ya le habíamos implantado (hacía dos años) exitosamente sus propias células en su hombro derecho y desde entonces, había dejado de dolerle y también había recuperado su movilidad casi completamente, algo bien cerca de considerarse “casi curado”, sin necesidad de someterse a una complicada e invasiva cirugía.