Frequently Asked Questions
Stem Cell Therapy FAQS
Stem cell therapy is on the leading edge of the emerging field known as regenerative medicine. Using sophisticated biogenics (products created from your own body), instead of relying on more traditional treatments such as steroids, NSAIDs (non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs), surgery, and other pharmaceuticals (which can cause unwanted side effects), we focus on harnessing the natural healing power of the stem cells retrieved from your own body.
Stem cells are undifferentiated cells capable of both integration and multiplication, which means that these cells not only divide and multiply in number, but also differentiate into specialized cells and tissues. With the remarkable versatility stem cells possess, the field of medicine -- and, more specifically, the field of regenerative medicine -- has developed and continues to explore new ways to utilize stem cells to address the health issues caused by diseased or damaged tissues.
Stem cells carry a rather broad definition, as there are many different types of stem cells currently being used or researched within the medical field. Outside of the field of medicine, the term “stem cell” is most often associated with embryonic stem cells, mainly due to the robust and ongoing public debate concerning the complicated moral and ethical issues surrounding the use of such cells.
There are many different types of stem cells, however, including adult or mesenchymal stem cells, which are derived from bone marrow and adipose tissue (more commonly referred to as fat). While there is ample reason for the fascination -- as well as the controversy -- associated with the “pluri-potential” embryonic stem cells capable of transforming into any body part, the mesenchymal stem cells found in bone marrow and fatty tissue are also quite versatile and can differentiate into cartilage and bone. There is a high likelihood that these stem cells also possess the ability to differentiate into other mesodermal elements that include blood vessels, connective tissue, fat, and nerve tissue.
No. We only retrieve and use adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). These stem cells are fully capable of differentiation into functioning cartilage, bone, ligaments, muscles, blood vessels, as well as certain organs.
No. Only your own adult mesenchymal stem cells can be used. There is no chance of receiving anyone else’s stem cells, as they are harvested and reinserted immediately. There is no risk of outside contamination or rejection from DNA or stem cells from other sources.
The process used to extract stem cells differs based on the type of stem cell. Bone marrow stem cells, for example, require an extraction method distinct from the method required to extract adipose stem cells. Bone marrow extraction tends to cause discomfort for the patient and yields far fewer stem cells than the liposuction process used to extract adipose stem cells, with bone marrow yielding anywhere from 5,000 to 60,000 stem cells compared to the 10 to 500 million stem cells secured through a single treatment of liposuction.
Adipose stem cells are usually taken from the patient’s abdomen while under a local anesthetic. The extraction process is brief, often lasting no more than 20 minutes and yielding plenty of stem cells for the purpose of treatment. In the case of autologous stem cell extractions, it is possible that the extraction is done via a closed system to ensure sterile conditions. Treatments using these kind of systems are brief, requiring as little as 90 minutes to extract and then reinsert the patient’s autologous stem cells.
Stem cell therapy is an exciting field with more and more treatments being developed. Stem cell therapies may hold the key to the treatment of conditions such as Alzheimer’s, stroke, baldness, deafness, blindness, heart attacks, missing teeth, spinal cord injuries, learning disorders, arthritis, erectile dysfunction, and other autoimmune disorders. While there is much research required, the possibilities are nearly endless.
Currently, the disease or condition you are seeking treatment for will need to be evaluated by a trained specialist who can determine if you are a good candidate for stem cell therapy. And while the procedure is minimally invasive, you will still need to be cleared for any stem cell treatment you undergo. As a patient centered practice, we focus on informed patient care and will provide you with ample information to help you make an informed decision regarding your own care.
Stem cells are like building blocks that can be encouraged to form into new, healthy tissues to replace diseased or injured cells, such as growing new knee cartilage, or helping to speed healing in various areas of the body. Normally, adult stem cells are present, but not activated. Known as progenitor cells, adult stem cells remain dormant until required. Presently, it is not clear if the cells change into the necessary type of cell or if they simply start and or encourage the healing cascade, but we do know that they carry reparative capabilities that can be used to promote healing at a cellular level.
Broadly speaking, there are two basic kinds of stem cells: embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells. As the name implies, embryonic stem cells come from embryos. These kinds of cells are known as pluri-potential, meaning that they can become anything required to create a human body. Embryonic stem cells are taken from unwanted embryos, and as such, are highly controversial. Embryonic stem cell use is highly regulated and has also been associated with certain kinds of tumor formation.
Adult stem cells, on the other hand, come from adults. Adult stem cells are harder to isolate, but still retain many (but not all) of their undifferentiated properties, allowing them to become nerve, skin, bone, cartilage and other tissues as needed, depending on the specific type of tissue they are recovered from. Bone marrow adult stem cells (mesenchymal stem cells), for instance, come from the mesodermal sections of the human body and can form into cartilage and bone.
Evidence suggests that they are also capable of differentiating into other tissues like connective tissues (ligaments, muscle, tendons), blood vessels, fatty tissues, nerve and blood vessels. Bone marrow stem cells are not as prevalent in the body and usually need to be cultured (encouraged to multiply in the lab) so that there are enough to work with.
Fortunately, human fat cells also have mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) which can be more easily harvested and separated from fat cells for use. Because the ratio of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) is over a thousand times greater in fat cells than bone marrow, these usually do not need to be cultured and can be obtained from fatty deposits in the patient’s body.
Adipose stem cells are a type of mesenchymal, or adult stem cell, which, unlike embryonic stem cells, are derived from the mesodermal section of an adult. Adult stem cells possess the ability to differentiate into bone as well as cartilage, and it is believed that these cells can also be used to create blood vessels, connective tissue, fat, and nerve tissue. Due to this level of versatility, adult stem cells can be utilized in the treatment of a wide range of medical conditions associated with disease or degenerative illness.
Adult stem cells can be derived from bone marrow as well as adipose (fat) tissue, with adipose stem cells being the adult stem cells derived from the latter mesodermal element. Adipose and bone marrow stem cells are equally versatile, but bone marrow stem cells must be cultured and multiplied to ensure the availability of the appropriate number of stem cells necessary for the purpose of the treatment in question.
Adipose stem cells, on the other hand, do not usually require the culturing process necessitated by the relatively low number of stem cells derived from bone marrow. Adipose stem cells are available in large numbers in adipose tissue, and most adults possess fat supplies that are more than adequate for the purpose of treatment involving the use of stem cells.
Adult stem cells, including both adipose stem cells and bone marrow stem cells, are considered “progenitor cells,” which lie dormant until injured or otherwise damaged tissue necessitates the healing processes performed by stem cells.
While mesenchymal (adult) stem cells are considered “progenitor cells,” embryonic or umbilical stem cells are considered “pluri-potential cells.” Pluri-potential cells have not yet differentiated and, since they are taken from the embryonic state of development, still possess the ability to transform into any body part. Given the versatility possessed by embryonic or umbilical stem cells, the potential medical applications of these types of stem cell are almost limitless.
Of course, the use of embryonic or umbilical stem cells has provoked a great deal of controversy and debate, primarily due to the fact that, unlike adult stem cells, these cells are derived from unborn embryos. Embryonic or umbilical stem cells also undergo a process of gamma radiation, which means these types of stem cell are not living cells.
Further complicating the issue is the fact that the use of embryonic or umbilical stem cells has been occasionally linked to the formation of tumors. Due to the relatively limited use of these types of stem cell, additional research is required to determine if there is indeed a causal link with tumor growth.
There are several distinct methods through which stem cells can be collected before being deployed during the treatment process, and these methods might involve the use of either homologous or autologous stem cells. Homologous stem cells are stem cells collected from a source other than the patient undergoing treatment, while autologous stem cells are harvested directly from the patient. Stem cells taken from a matching donor would thus be considered homologous. Conversely, stem cells harvested from and redeployed in the same patient would be considered autologous.
National Stem Cell Centers has a designated sterile treatment facility where abdominal fat can be harvested under strictly controlled conditions with sophisticated and specialized equipment. We require less than 100cc of fat to recover stem cells. Patients receive a local anesthetic during the procedure and any postoperative discomfort is usually minimal, with minimal restrictions on daily activities.
None. We make no claims as to the efficacy, as our goal is to advance cell-based medicine and make it available for patients. For those patients who are interested, we provide ongoing data under approved Institutional Review Board (IRB) validated studies, and we follow stem cell treatment patients over the course of their lifetime in order to gather significant scientific data concerning stem cell treatments and degenerative diseases.
While we are very aware of anecdotal stories about marked improvement in various conditions, we make no claims about our stem cell treatments. Additionally, we have submitted preliminary safety data to the FDA as part of an approval application. (Our submissions are currently under consideration.)
Please keep in mind that these are your own stem cells, used only in your own body. We believe that rigorous statistical analysis of our findings will support our confidence that the treatments are both significant and effective.
Still, these are your own cells and not “medicines” for sale. They are only being used in your own body. Most likely, no claim needs to be made; rather a statistical analysis of our findings would suffice to suggest whether treatments are truly and significantly effective.
No. However, National Stem Cell Centers procedures fall under the category of physician’s practice of medicine, in which the doctor and the patient are able to consider their chosen course of treatment. Our affiliated physicians follow all relevant FDA guidelines concerning the manipulation and treatment of a patient’s own body tissues. Furthermore, they do not manipulate or alter the cells after retrieving them, and they are re-inserted directly into the patient who provided them.
No. Only certain medical conditions are currently being treated by the doctors affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers. All patients must be deemed as medically stable in order to undergo stem cell treatment. Additionally, we focus only on conditions that we believe may be beneficial to the patient. Some medical conditions may not be appropriate for stem cell treatment. However, stem cell treatment is used for a broad spectrum of conditions and disorders, particularly in pain management.
Yes. Patients who have uncontrolled cancer are excluded. Additionally, patients with active infections must undergo treatment for the infection prior to any procedure. Patients with bleeding disorders, or those taking certain blood thinning medications will require special consideration, as do severely ill patients, before being considered for stem cell therapy treatment.
Teratomas (a form of tumor) are extremely rare, usually benign, and related to embryonic cells, not the adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that we utilize in our stem cell treatments. There is no evidence that adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) cause cancer.
National Stem Cell Centers does not offer stem cell therapies for patients with cancer.
Stem cell therapies are being used to treat a wide variety of conditions and disorders including: neck and back pain, knee pain, joint pain, hip pain, erectile dysfunction (ED), autoimmune diseases, alopecia (hair loss), low sex drive, facelifts, osteoarthritis, heart and lung related disorders, certain neurological conditions, and other conditions as approved by the physicians affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers.
Stem cells are harvested from fat using an advanced mini-lipoharvesting process that is performed while the patient is under a local anesthetic. We employ a tiny (2 mm) puncture to administer the anesthetic. Patients can save a portion of the fat for future stem cell harvests by informing the surgeon of their desire to retain excess fat supplies. The procedure itself is very brief; patients usually report only minimal discomfort and disruption to normal activities is also minimal.
Stem cells can be stored in a cryogenic state (frozen) for an indefinite period of time (Frozen cells can remain viable for many decades). You can also make arrangements to donate your frozen and safely stored stem cells to family members, for scientific studies, or to other people who might benefit from stem cell therapy, but may not be able to undergo stem cell harvesting procedures themselves. All tissues undergo testing to eradicate the chance of spreading communicable diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, and syphilis.
Regenerative medicine is a field of medicine in which normal function is either established or restored through the replacement or regeneration of human tissue, cells, or organs. This rapidly advancing field of medicine addresses functional issues stemming from congenital defects as well as acute or cumulative damage to the tissue, cells, or organs in question.
The field of regenerative medicine features elements originating from a variety of subject areas, including, but not limited to, biochemistry, biomechanics, cell transplantation, nanotechnology, stem cell biology, and tissue engineering. Regenerative medicine draws on each of these elements to develop processes for the creation of living tissues capable of restoring lost function and stimulating the healing process.
In essence, regenerative medicine stimulates healing from within, mainly through the activation of the body’s natural cellular resources. While there are a number of therapies that might be categorized as a regenerative therapy, stem cell therapies are believed to hold the key to activating the healing process at the cellular level to address issues associated with blood vessels, bones, muscles, nerves, and tendons.
The general concepts and practices associated with this field of medicine predate the coining of its name, which is widely attributed to William Haseltine in 1999 but first appeared in a paper written by Leland Kaiser seven years earlier. Even though the term is a relatively new one, the concept of regenerative medicine can be traced back to a book -- The Culture of New Organs -- written in 1938 by Alexis Carrell and Charles Lindberg. It was the work of Carrell and Lindberg that ultimately served as the foundation for the artificial heart.
In the 1950s, organ transplantation became a reality, but it was not until the 1980s that cyclosporine reduced the risk of rejection to such a degree that transplantation became a viable life-saving treatment option. It was around this same time that stem cells were discovered in human cord blood, and, in 1999, the first lab-grown organ -- an artificial bladder -- was implanted into a patient.
At least in a nominal sense, yes, regenerative medicine is considered a specialty within the field of medicine. It is a new and rapidly progressing medical specialty revolving around the utilization of stem cells for the purpose of healing. With the versatility of stem cells, the potential applications of regenerative medicine are virtually limitless. It is primarily due to this fact that there is so much interest in this field of medicine, as stem cell therapies might be the key to addressing any number of conditions that are currently considered untreatable.
As the field continues to evolve and advance, however, it will increasingly rely on a multidisciplinary approach in the treatment of a wide range of ailments. Such an approach is not easily confined to a single medical specialty, particularly one that already encompasses several focus areas that include cell biology, clinical medicine, and engineering.
The Society of Regenerative Medicine is an organization aiming to serve as the “One Voice of Regenerative Medicine.” The organization and its advisory board work to educate members by sharing the most recent developments in research and practice management as well as the latest techniques being utilized in the field. It accomplishes its educational goals through the use of workshops and webinars as well as through its collaborative efforts with experienced medical practitioners from any and all relevant fields.
Emphasizing evidence-based methods in regenerative medicine, the organization’s faculty is made up of expert researchers, physicians, and scientists from all over the world, all of whom specialize in regenerative medicine, anti-aging, orthopedics, and aesthetics. In order to ensure its members benefit from the educational material it shares, the organization only distributes informational content after it has been reviewed and approved by the Society of Regenerative Medicine’s Advisory Board.
Yes, physicians can specialize in regenerative medicine and recognize the many ways in which stem cell therapies can be applied to treat all manner of conditions, including pain, chronic inflammation, orthopedic diseases, nerve conditions, urological disorders, autoimmune disorders, and heart and lung diseases, and. Since a wide range of conditions are treated through the use of stem cell therapies, the physicians do not just specialize in regenerative medicine; they also specialize in treating the specific condition in question, including each of the following medical specialties:
- Ear, Nose, and Throat
- Functional Medicine
- Internal Medicine
- Sports Medicine
The wide variety of medical specialties represented in practitioners of regenerative medicine underscores the versatility of stem cell therapies while also showcasing the multidisciplinary approach unique to this rapidly advancing medical field.
Medical issues can be treated with any number of tools, such as the medications that limit the effects of a disease to such a degree that the body is able to repair itself through normal healing processes. In the field of regenerative medicine, hormone replacement therapies strengthen and work in conjunction with the immune system in order to repair the tissues damaged or otherwise injured because of an existing disease or condition. As more and more research becomes available, treatment for degenerative diseases will increasingly rely on identifying the genetic defects responsible for the patient’s condition.
Of course, stem cell therapies hold a great deal of promise in the treatment of any number of medical conditions. Due to a system of molecules called cytokines (these protein-signaling molecules are often referred to as “growth factors” as well), stem cells possess incredible versatility. The use of cytokines in conjunction with stem cells is one of the most rapidly evolving areas of regenerative medicine, and the continued development of these tools will play a significant role in the future of the regenerative medical field.
When it comes to the use of stem cells in various fields of medicine, there is a lengthy track record of success that stretches back for more than 50 years. Over the course of these five decades, doctors primarily relied on bone marrow transplants to deliver stem cells to patients suffering from blood disorders or conditions like lymphoma and leukemia.
In recent years, however, doctors and researchers have developed a number of alternative methods for securing and deploying stem cells, leading to the development of autologous adipose-derived stem cell therapies.
While there is substantial anecdotal and experimental evidence demonstrating the safety and efficacy of these recently developed stem cell therapies, it may take several years to accumulate the amount of data necessary to produce a definitive study. Based on the data now available, favorable patient outcomes correlate rather convincingly with the sheer quantity of stem cells redeployed into the patient.
With the ongoing advances in regenerative medicine, the number of patients benefiting from stem cell therapies continues to grow by the day. That being said, a retrospective observational study published in Lancet Haematology stated that by the end of 2012, well over 1 million patients had undergone stem cell therapy involving the use of adult stem cells. Obviously, in the time that has passed since that data was collected, many more patients have enjoyed successful outcomes after undergoing an adipose-derived stem cell therapy.
It’s also worth noting that as more and more patients turn to regenerative medicine and stem cell therapy, in particular, doctors and researchers remain dedicated to the continued study of adult stem cells. According to data made available by the US National Library of Health (via the National Institute of Health website), there are nearly 3,300 interventional studies involving adult stem cells currently underway.
Yes, patient testimonials and reviews for stem cell treatments are widely available to anyone interested in learning more about the safety and efficacy of stem cell therapy. There is a great deal of anecdotal evidence detailing the significant improvement patients experience following treatment with adipose-derived stem cells, and there is a wealth of scientific data available through the ongoing studies validated by the Institutional Review Board, or IRB.
It’s important to note that the data required for a definitive study will take a great deal of time to accumulate, and it’s possible that it will be up to 10 years before researchers are able to accumulate this data and produce a conclusive study. Thankfully, doctors and researchers routinely provide the scientific data and statistical analyses of their findings in order to ensure patients have as much relevant information as possible when considering the potential benefits of undergoing stem cell therapy.
Based on the clinical, experimental, and anecdotal evidence currently available, the success of a stem cell treatment consistently correlates with the number of stem cells reintroduced into the patient. This is why doctors and researchers have expressed excitement about adipose-derived stem cells, as the adult stem cells taken from the patient’s fat deposits are available in far greater numbers than the other available options.
As a minimally invasive procedure in which the patient’s own stem cells are harvested and redeployed via a closed loop system, stem cell treatments are considered safe and effective, and there is very little risk of complication associated with the procedure. Using a sterile, closed loop system, the stem cells are never exposed to the outside environment, minimizing the risk of contamination with bacteria or outside organisms. Since the stem cells are harvested and redeployed into the same patient, the risk of infection or rejection is also minimized.
With regard to procedures involving the use of stem cells, the United States has different rules and regulations than other countries. Some patients go overseas for treatment because they have been led to believe that is the only option available to them, while others might believe that they can achieve a better treatment outcome through the pluripotent stem cells available overseas.
In the US, there are fairly strict regulations concerning the artificial manipulation of stem cells, and the use of pluripotent cells is not just heavily restricted but also quite controversial. The presence of these regulations does not mean that patients in the US must travel overseas to achieve a better result.
In fact, the available evidence suggests that patient outcomes are directly tied to the number of stem cells deployed, and the stem cells taken from fat tissue are available in far greater numbers than pluripotent stem cells or stem cells that are taken from bone marrow. In addition to being far more cost-effective and convenient, the outcome data demonstrates that the adipose-derived stem cell treatments available in the US are also ideally designed to yield the best possible patient outcome.
Yes, in addition to the widely available scientific publications and papers, there are plenty of ongoing -- as well as completed -- research studies concerning stem cell treatments. The NIH provides easy access to information about ongoing clinical trials and research studies through the US National Library of Medicine’s searchable database, which can be found at the following link: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov.
With so much interest in stem cell research, scientific journals regularly publish papers detailing the latest findings concerning the advances made in the field of regenerative medicine, and doctors and researchers regularly submit data for ongoing studies validated by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). This data, along with the statistical analyses conducted through the use of this data, is freely available to patients who wish to learn more about the most recent advances in stem cell therapy and regenerative medicine.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that stem cell treatments work well for joint pain including knee/shoulder/hip pain, arthritis, osteoporosis, auto-immune disorders, neurological disorders and other conditions.
As is often the case in the field of medicine, the economics associated with stem cell therapy can vary widely from one patient to the next depending on several distinct factors. Obviously, the condition being treated plays a prominent role, as some conditions might only require a single deployment while others require several deployments over multiple sessions.
The cost of a stem cell treatment depends on a number of factors determined on a patient-by-patient basis, but it is generally the case that the total cost of treatment will come out to a fraction of the cost demanded by clinics outside of the United States.
The cost of a stem cell treatment usually includes the harvesting, preparation, and deployment of stem cells, but the specific treatment cost cannot be accurately determined until the doctor consults the patient and has the opportunity to conduct a medical evaluation. Fortunately, there is no cost associated with the initial consultation.
Cost of treatment can vary between $5,000 and $10,000 plus any storage costs.
Thanks to the prospect of new technological advances and treatment innovations, it is likely that the cost of future stem cell treatments will only become more affordable and accessible over time. The successful utilization of adipose-derived stem cells is a perfect example of how an innovative technique can reduce the cost of treatment, as the stem cells taken from fat tissue do not have to be cultured to produce the ideal number of stem cells necessary for treatment.
Generally speaking, stem cells stored in a stem cell bank require an initial fee to preserve harvested stem cells in a cryogenic state. In addition to the initial fee, patients should expect to pay an annual fee for the continued storage of their cryogenically preserved stem cells. The cost associated with stem cell banking is often offset in a number of important ways, especially for patients in need of repeat stem cell deployments to treat their condition. Stem cell banking, therefore, helps reduce the cost of treatment and makes the treatment process that much more convenient for these patients.
The initial cost of stem cell processing can be at least $2,500 plus annual storage costs.
Stem cell therapy is still considered an investigational therapy and is therefore unlikely to be covered by health insurance. When considering any medical procedure, patients should always consult their insurance provider to find out what is covered by insurance and what is not. As more research studies become available and demonstrate the efficacy of stem cell therapy in treating a wide range of conditions, it is expected that more and more insurance carriers will begin to cover the costs associated with stem cell treatment. Fortunately, patients interested in adipose-derived stem cell therapies will find that these treatments are quite affordable even in the absence of insurance coverage.
Patients will usually find that they have a number of financing options available to them if they wish to pay for the procedure over time, but it should be noted that the availability of these options will vary from patient to patient based on the patient’s credit rating, among a number of other factors. Patients interested in the possibility of financing a stem cell procedure over time are encouraged to ask about the options available to them during the initial consultation process, which is available to patients on a complimentary basis.
There is always some level of risk accompanying any medical procedure, including procedures that are commonly characterized as “routine.” In the case of stem cell therapy, the level of risk associated with the procedure is exceptionally low and patients are very unlikely to experience complications stemming from treatment.
The fact that the stem cells utilized during the procedure are derived from the patient’s own adipose tissue and remain protected in a closed, sterile loop until they are redeployed into the patient minimizes the risk of infection or rejection. During the initial consultation process, patients should expect the doctor to detail any potential risks or complications associated with the procedure.
As with any medical procedure or treatment, there is always some amount of risk. However, the risk for stem cell therapy is considered extremely low, as we use adult stem cells harvested from the patient’s own body and then returned during the same procedure, without any manipulation of the cells. This is done in a sterile, closed loop that protects the cells from outside contact with the environment and any bacteria or organisms that might contaminate the cells. This way, the cells are a perfect match with little to no chance of rejection or infection.
Patients considering a stem cell procedure in which adipose-derived stem cells are taken from the patient’s own tissue before being redeployed will be pleased to learn that the procedure is considered both safe and minimally invasive. A great deal of data has been collected from patients who have previously undergone a stem cell therapy to further confirm the safety and efficacy of adipose-derived stem cell treatment, and the data collected thus far demonstrates that an adverse event is a highly unlikely patient outcome.
It is quite uncommon for patients to experience any significant side effects stemming from stem cell treatments involving the use of the patient’s own adult mesenchymal stem cells, but, as with any medical procedure, there is the possibility that a patient might experience certain side effects after undergoing treatment.
Although adipose-derived stem cell therapies are considered minimally invasive, some patients might experience minor postoperative discomfort around the site of the 2mm puncture used to secure stem cells for the purpose of redeployment. There is also the possibility of an infection affecting the patient following the procedure’s completion, but the use of a sterile, closed loop system -- along with the fact that the stem cells are harvested from the patient and reinserted without any manipulation -- makes this an extremely unlikely outcome.
The is little to no risk of infection associated with a stem cell procedure in which doctors utilize the patient’s own adipose-derived stem cells and a sterile, closed loop system that protects the cells from exposure to the external environment. Since the stem cells are taken directly from the patient and redeployed via a sterile, closed loop system, there is an extremely low likelihood that the cells could be contaminated or exposed to bacteria that might result in an infection.
Generally speaking, it is unlikely that a patient’s use of lotion, gel, or other topical products will interfere with the area being injected with stem cells. That being said, it is always best for patients to disclose the specific lotion, gel, or topical product they use so that the doctor performing the procedure is able to evaluate whether a particular product might interfere in some way.
It is possible that stem cell therapy might be inhibited if patients are taking other medications or are currently undergoing some other type of medical treatment. During the initial consultation process, the patient should take great care to disclose any medications they are taking and any treatments they are undergoing so that the doctor can determine the patient’s eligibility for treatment. Patients taking blood thinners or those with an active infection, for example, could be excluded from treatment under certain circumstances.
There have been several recent developments in stem cell technologies that have altered the way stem cell therapies are carried out, including the development and utilization of the sterile, closed-loop system that allows a patient’s adipose-derived stem cells to be harvested and reinserted without exposure to the external environment. This system greatly reduces the risk of complication and infection, but such a system is only useful when there are more than enough stem cells immediately available for the purpose of treatment.
This is one of the additional benefits of adipose-derived stem cells, which are available in large numbers in fat tissue. Unlike stem cells that are taken from bone marrow, adipose-derived stem cells are available in quantities that are thousands of times greater. As a result, adipose-derived stem cells do not need to be cultured in a laboratory setting, thereby enabling doctors to immediately redeploy the patient’s stem cells via the closed-loop system.
Stem cells taken from bone marrow, on the other hand, have to be cultured and multiplied in order to ensure an adequate number of stem cells are available to deploy into the patient. This process can take several weeks, requiring the patient to undergo a separate procedure to harvest the stem cells before returning again so the cultured stem cells can be deployed.
With the seemingly endless possibilities associated with stem cell therapy and treatments, it should come as no surprise that doctors and researchers are working diligently to ensure patients have access to the most cutting-edge medical care possible. Through investigational studies and clinical trials, researchers and doctors have made a number of critical advances in the field of regenerative medicine.
In what is perhaps one of the most critical of these recent advances, the development of treatment methodologies that rely on adipose-derived adult stem cells has eliminated the need for doctors to culture stem cells in a lab before deployment into the patient. Since the mesenchymal stem cells taken from fat tissue are available in far greater numbers -- over a thousand times greater -- than stem cells taken from bone marrow, doctors have more than enough stem cells available for immediate deployment into the patient.
This important development in stem cell research has made stem cell therapy much more accessible than ever before, as the use of adipose-derived stem cells has made the procedure more cost-effective and convenient while also eliminating the discomfort created when stem cells are harvested from bone marrow.
Patients, doctors, and researchers are right to be excited about what the future might hold for stem cell therapy, particularly since recent developments in the field of regenerative medicine have highlighted the seemingly limitless potential uses of stem cells in the treatment of so many different medical conditions. Despite the success of currently available treatment methodologies, there is still a great deal of research and analysis that must be conducted to ensure new treatments are safe and effective in delivering the best possible medical outcome for the patient.
As ongoing research and clinical trials continue to progress, more and more patients will find that stem cell therapy is a viable treatment option for whatever medical condition they may be dealing with. Even though the future of stem cell therapy is very promising, there are challenges that doctors and researchers must address and overcome in order to ensure that the full medical potential of stem cell therapy is ultimately realized.
The field of regenerative medicine is considered relatively new, but the seemingly limitless possibilities associated with stem cell therapy has generated a great deal of interest in this new and rapidly advancing field of medicine. With all the recent advances made in the field, more and more doctors and researchers are shifting their professional focus to stem cell therapy and regenerative medicine.
As the field continues to attract so many intelligent and innovative professionals, the pace of new developments will only continue to accelerate. This will in turn ensure that in the future patients will have access to a wide range of safe and effective medical treatments in which stem cells are used to treat diverse medical conditions that might otherwise reduce their overall quality of life.
Patients considering any kind of medical procedure should take great care to select a doctor and facility that is ideally suited to meet their unique medical needs. While there may be many doctors and facilities that offer stem cell therapy, the physicians affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers remains uniquely qualified to meet the needs of patients hoping to address a wide range of medical conditions, including, but not limited to, conditions that fall under each of the following categories:
- Orthopedic pain
- Autoimmune disorders
- Neurological disorders
- Urological disorders
- Cardiac disorders
- Pulmonary disorders
- Cosmetic or aesthetic conditions
Obviously, a wide range of conditions fall under the categories listed above, which is why the surgeons affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers ensures that each patient is first evaluated by a specialist with extensive experience in treating the specific condition for which the patient is seeking treatment.
National Stem Cell Centers feature a number of unique qualities, and the patients who choose to undergo treatment with doctors affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers often cite the fact that stem cell procedures are the sole focus of the facility as a primary reason for their selection. Of course, the singular focus on stem cell procedures is not the only reason patients choose to undergo treatment with physicians affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers; patients are also drawn to the experienced, board-certified surgeons that are uniquely experienced in performing stem cell therapies, not to mention the fact that the procedures are minimally invasive and eminently affordable.
The doctors affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers are board certified surgeons with extensive experience performing stem cell therapies involving the use of adipose-derived stem cells. In addition to the knowledge and expertise concerning the field of regenerative medicine, the board-certified surgeons at National Stem Cell Centers are able to draw on their experience specializing in the treatment of diverse medical conditions. The doctors affiliated with National Stem Cell Centers are recognized as experts in a wide range of medical fields, including orthopedics, neurology, urology, cardiology, and immunology, just to name a few.
National Stem Cell Centers has multiple office locations, including a New York office as well as a Long Island office. The New York office is located in the heart of Manhattan while the Long Island office is located in Great Neck in Nassau County adjacent to the LIRR Train Station (15 Barstow Road, Great Neck, NY 11021). The New York and Long Island offices both offer complimentary consultations, which can be scheduled through the online request form or by calling either office directly (New York: 646-448-0427; Long Island: 516-403-1457).
- Patients may fill out and submit the online request form located on the homepage of the website. Once the form has been submitted, a patient coordinator will contact the patient to set up an appointment and answer any questions the patient may have.
- Patients can contact the New York office (646-448-0427) or Long Island office (516-403-1457) directly to ask any questions they may have or to set up an appointment for a complimentary consultation.
Call (646) 448-0427 (New York) or (516) 403-1457 (Long Island) today to find out if stem cell therapies are right for you. National Stem Cell Centers also has locations in Southampton NY, New Jersey, Dallas and Houston in Texas, and Atlanta GA.
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