Autologous (autologous refers to cells, tissues or even growth factors that are re-implanted in the same individual as they come from, another words patient receives his or her own cells) cell therapy injections is a by-product of blood that is rich in Growth factors and platelets. Until now, its use has been confined to the hospital setting. This was due mainly to the cost of separating the cells from the blood and the large amount of blood needed to produce a suitable quantity of cells. New technology permits the doctor to harvest and produce a sufficient quantity of cells from only 30-50 cc of blood drawn from the patient while they are in the office setting. It takes about 20 minutes to harvest these cells prior to injection.
These cells allow the body to take advantage of the normal healing pathways at a greatly accelerated rate. During the healing process, the body rushes many cells and cell-types to the injected area in order to accelerate the healing process. These cells perform many functions, including release of growth factors (GF) into the diseased or arthritic and injured sites. Another main function is attracting Mesenchymal Stem Cells to the damaged area. These Growth factors (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor VEGF1, Platelet Derived Growth Factors PDGF, Insulin-Like Growth Factor ILGF and Transforming Growth Factor Beta TGF) function to assist the body in repairing itself by stimulating stem cells to regenerate new tissue. The more growth factors released sequestered into the damaged cells, the more stem cells stimulated to produce new host tissue. Thus, one can easily see that Cell Therapy and its applications for injection in to the Joints and Tendons to improve osteoarthritis and sports injuries. Currently Cell Therapy has been used for pain and arthritis of Knee, Shoulder, Spine, Hip, Ankle, Wrist and Elbow at The Center For Regenerative Medicine.