Stem Cell Treatments
Overall, there is a misconception of the words “Stem Cells”. In many cases, the words “stem cell” is associated with either cloning or the cells taken from unborn baby fetus. This is not the case.
Stem cells are not black and white, the treatment protocols vary significantly from one practitioner to the next.
Stem Cells have been around for over 20 years, and we now know stem cells can be obtained from right about anywhere in your body.
Types of Stem Cell Treatments
Currently there are 3 main types of Stem Cell Therapies available in Australia. These are known as “adult stem cells”.
- Body Fat (Adipose Tissue) – The gold standard, highest cell counts
- Bone Marrow – Desirable for patients who are very lean
- Blood – Very low cell counts, useful in simple situations and requires culturing
Macquarie Stem Cells performs Stem Cell Treatments listed below
This treatment involves collection of your body fat via liposuction, it is known as the “Gold Standard Treatment” containing extremely high cell counts for most patients and providing the ability to treat multiple joints along with an intravenous injection.
This treatment involves collection of your bone marrow via the iliac crescent. Typically bone marrow is used for patients who are lacking body fat or patients looking to treat a single joint with reduced costs.
The video below explains the difference between embryonic cells and adult stem cells very clearly. It also helps identify how these cells treat osteoarthritis.
Separating Stem Cells
There is more than 1 way to separate stem cells from your tissues. The 3 main methods are listed below;
- Ultrasound assisted separation
- Mechanical disruption
- Enzymatic separation
Each and every clinic will adopt 1 or more of these methods and they will make their own tweaks. There are literally thousands of different cell separation protocols. No 2 treatments will be a like.
We use the mechanical and external ultrasound cell separation methods. These are significantly safer than using Enzymes, since these are used to breakdown connective tissue; this is how they separate stem cells from other tissues. There is a potential for this enzyme to be left-over in the stem cell injection process, this could lead to destruction of connective tissue within the joint (Pak J et al., 2017).
To Culture or NOT to Culture?
Cell culturing in a nutshell is the process of removing the complete Stromal Vascular Fraction (SVF), then separating just 1 type of cell from the SVF, and growing this cell type in a laboratory to multiply the cell numbers.
The SVF contains multiple cell strands that are beneficial to our bodies, such as;
- mesenchymal stem cells & haematopoietic stem cells
- pericytes – adipocytes – fibroblasts – endothelial cells
- vascular progenitors
- endothelial progenitor cells – haematopoietic progenitors
The SVF works systemically as a whole body approach. These cells can help repair blood vessels, help modulate the immune system as well as many other types of repairs, this means the SVF is very beneficial to damage in our body.
Another important fact about SVF is the ability to home to areas that are inflamed. They have a “homing” effect to areas that are damaged and require repairs. This also means SVF can home to and repair multiple tissues in a single treatment.
(Paz et al. 2012), (Riordan et al., 2009) (Pak J et al., 2017)
When cells are cultured, it can lead to DNA replication stress, and this can drive tumorigenesis, leading to genetic mutations within the cells (Bétous et al., 2016) (Martin U., 2017).
Cultured cells are typically useful in treating a simple problem such as one specific area of worn cartilage. They work better in a localized situation, especially because cultured cells will lose majority of their “homing” ability. (Rombouts et al., 2003)
This is why we DO NOT CULTURE. We provide the full cellular mix known as the”Stromal Vascular Fraction” (SVF)
Mobility of Stem Cells
This video of a zebra fish (otherwise known as the glass fish) under a microscope, reveals the natural mobility and division process of stem cells. This is a beautiful way to understand how stem cell mechanisms can behave. After watching this video, you will understand why an injection into your knee may result in improvements to multiple joints or other conditions.
Keep in mind, all Stem Cell treatments are different. Other treatments may not allow this process to occur.
Cell Separation & Testing by Dr. Bright
In addition to stem cells, blood can be drawn to separate the Platelets and Growth Factors. This is known as PRP INJECTIONS.
Most common use of PRP injections are as follows;
- To treat Muscle & Tendon injuries
The normal role of platelets in the body is to adhere to any gap in blood vessels forming a clot to block the hole and releasing cytokines to heal the damage. It is this healing power that is used to heal tendon, joint and other soft tissue injuries.
- Pre-indicative test for Adipose Derived Stem Cell response.
We have observed all of the patients treated to this date, whom have responded to their own plasma have responded to their own Stem Cells derived from body fat.
To obtain further information