Introducing the BMAC
Bone Marrow Derived Stem Cells
What is Bone Marrow?
Bone marrow is the spongy tissue found in the center of bones. It is unique because it contains a rich supply of a broad range of stem cells. The cells found in concentrated Bone Marrow Aspirate (BMA) have been shown to support repair or growth of bone, cartilage, muscle, marrow, tendons, ligaments and connective tissue.
What is BMAC and How is it obtained?
The Harvest Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) System is used to concentrate the stem cells that are found in bone marrow. The starting point for making concentrated bone marrow is drawing a small (30 mL to 60mL) sample of marrow from the iliac crest (hip).
It is spun in a centrifuge to concentrate the sample.
Processing the sample takes about 15 minutes. From this point we will inject the cellular mix directly into the patients affected joint under ultrasound guidance.
Why Bone Marrow as opposed to Body Fat?
The honest answer is if a patient is lacking body fat or they are looking to treat a single joint with minimal cost, Bone Marrow harvest is a good procedure.
BMAC saves operating room time compared to liposuction of Adipose Tissue, therefore it is commonly half the cost of our of Adipose Derived Cells method via ultrasonication.
In the literature of reported clinical trials on Adipose Derived Cells in comparison with Bone Marrow Cells show they both share similar properties of Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC’s).
However, the cellular mix from adipose tissue are equivalent, if not superior to bone marrow in terms of differentiation ability & angiogenesis stimulating potential.
- Bone marrow contains approximately 1/10,000 to 1/100,000 MSC per nucleated cell.
- Whereas adipose tissue contains approximately 100-1000 fold higher MSC concentration. Therefore you can obtain significantly more nucleated cells from adipose tissue as compared to bone marrow
Ref: (Paz Rodriguez, et al 2012)
Do not be put off by the cell count numbers using BMAC, if we are treating 1 joint, these cell quantities have been proven to work very well.
Where do we harvest the Bone Marrow from?
We retrieve the bone marrow from the patients iliac crest, as can be seen from the picture indicated below.
- This is a good joint to harvest bone marrow from since it does not require deep penetration of the aspiration needle.
- The cellular composition of iliac crest bone has proven to contain a rich source of regenerative cells as pictured below.
How Long Does This Treatment Take?
This is approximately a 2 hour outpatient procedure which will be performed under local anaesthetic and intra-muscular sedation.
The collected bone marrow is spun in a centrifuge to concentrate the sample and separate the cellular mix. Processing the sample will take approximately 15 minutes.
We will close the incision wound with superficial skin glue.
From this point we will perform the cell separation then inject the cellular mix directly into the patients affected joint under ultrasound guidance.
Results post BMAC Treatment
Published Case Study: Stage 3 medial chondral injury to the talus that was confirmed by MRI
The patient was compliant with the 6 weeks of post-operative non-weight bearing. At 8 weeks, x-rays (Figures 4 and 5) showed subchondral lucency consistent with revascularization. Full weight bearing and low impact exercise was initiated at 8 weeks. X-rays at 12 weeks (Figures 6 and 7) showed trabecular filling of the lesion indicative of healing. Patient was able to return to pain-free running at 12 weeks and competitive basketball at 16 weeks.
Before BMAC: Talus
Post BMAC: Talus
TGA APPROVAL CERTIFICATE
This information does not take the place of discussing your medical condition with your doctor. These procedures require needle access, possibly resulting in apprehension, discomfort, tenderness, bruising, swelling, bleeding or pain at the access site, at which there is a small risk of infection.
Lightheadedness, fainting, nausea or vomiting may occur. Before any medical procedure: Tell your doctor about prescription and nonprescription medicines and any natural or herbal remedies you are taking or plan to take.