One of the questions we are most frequently asked is “Where do the stem cells for my procedure come from?”
There are three potential sources for stem cells:
- Bone Marrow - from the patient's own hip bone
- Adipose - from fat tissue
- Birth Products - from donated amniotic fluid, placental tissue or cord-blood
The FDA strictly regulates how any tissue can be used in medicine. Living tissue can only be used on the same patient that it came from – or, from a first-degree relative or a proven genetic match. This is why organ donation and blood transfusions are so tightly regulated.
How does this relate to stem cell use?
Two of the three sources we cited above—bone marrow and adipose-derived stem cells—are a patient’s own tissue. The third source, birth products, are only allowed by the FDA if there are no living cells remaining in the product. In other words, this means that any of the stem cells that might be captured in the amniotic fluid/tissue or the cord blood are no longer viable or living when they are administered to patients despite what any sales person says.
There are other molecules in amniotic fluid and cord blood that may have anti-inflammatory properties, and that may be responsible for a patient’s improvement in symptoms – but it can’t be from stem cells since these are no longer living or metabolically active when they are given to a patient.
So, if you are being told that these birth products have living cells in them, that is simply not true.
Adipose tissue and bone marrow, however, both contain active stem cells.
The stem cells can’t be effectively extracted from adipose tissue without an enzyme that chemically releases them from their attachment to the adipose cells. The FDA sees this as a manipulation of the tissue and forbids its use due to unproven safety.
If a physician offers you adipose tissue stem cells, they are violating the FDA restriction related to adipose-derived stem cells or they are using a technique that doesn’t truly release the stem cells.
Bone marrow-derived stem cells
Bone marrow is the most common source of stem cells for various types of therapy. Stem cells from this source have been used for dozens of years in the treatment of some types of cancer in the form of a bone marrow transplant. Because the safety and effectiveness of bone marrow-derived stem cells are so well documented, BennuLife uses bone marrow-derived stem cells for its treatments almost exclusively.
The process of Stem Cell rescue
Using stem cells rescued from your own bone marrow is the only FDA-compliant source for stem cell therapy injections.
The process is simple, fast, minimally invasive, and nearly painless. It is performed in the office under local anesthetic, meaning patients can return to normal activity almost immediately following the procedure.
Bone Marrow Aspiration Process
1. Your doctor will numb the lower back and hip area in preparation for the procedure. Once the anesthetic has taken effect and you are completely comfortable, we will remove a small amount of bone marrow using a special needle. This method of extracting bone marrow is quick and safe.
2. The bone marrow is then processed to prepare it for your injection. You will rest in the office while the treatment is being prepared.
3. The doctor will inject the concentrated stem cells and growth factors into the area of focus, which may be your knee, hip, shoulder, wrist, or another joint of concern.
Stem cell therapy is safe and minimally invasive
As more time passes, we have observed more long-term, positive results using stem cell therapy. For some patients, it is a viable alternative to serious surgical procedures, many of which have absolutely no guarantee of success and will require a lengthy rehabilitation and recovery.
Stem cell therapy has also proven effective for people who have experienced failed orthopedic surgeries. Faced with a lifetime of chronic pain and all its inherent complications, stem cell therapy represents hope where there has previously been none.
When considering all of your options for pain relief for chronic joint pain, inflammation, and degenerative disorders, stem cell therapy should be on your radar as a viable and potentially life-altering alternative.
More than 95 percent of all the published research showing safety and efficacy is from bone marrow-derived stem cells. Why wouldn’t you choose the only proven source of stem cells for yourself or others?
To find out whether you are a good candidate for stem cell therapy, schedule a consultation with BennuLife today.