Stem cell meniscus repair & knee cartilage repair costs vary depending on the type of treatment you’re seeking. Every year there are over 600,000 Americans have knee replacement surgery, and that number is expected to rise to 3 million by 2030.
Yes, you read that correct, 3 million.
And a number of people will have to have both knees treated so the actual number of replacements is much larger.
Now think about this.
These are all people that have been told that they need to undergo major surgery to have their knee replaced or joints repaired from the damage caused by arthritis and age. These numbers don’t include the over 700,000 people that have a surgical procedure done to try to treat the meniscus which recently has been determined that the popular surgery options which are paid for by insurance are not getting the results that were intended.
But what if there was an alternative? One that didn’t require people to go under the knife, spend weeks recovering, and risk the side effects of pain killers?
Well, there is. Stem cells for meniscus repair and knee cartilage damage are providing knee pain sufferers a solution to their damaged knees with a simple shot.
What Causes Knee and Cartilage Damage?
First, it’s important to understand that there is a difference between your meniscus and knee cartilage. Cartilage is the connective tissue in our body that serves many purposes, including keeping our bones and joints strong and healthy. There are different types of cartilage found throughout our bodies.
The meniscus is not attached to the bone like articular cartilage, it sits between the bone ends to act as a cushion for the joint. Regardless of what kind of cartilage in the knee is damaged, the fact of the matter is, it causes pain and mobility issues that, left untreated, can cause serious consequences.
Both types of knee cartilage can be injured. The most common causes of a cartilage injury in the knee include; traumatic injuries, arthritis, chronic overuse, and age. Any number of these factors, or a combination of factors, can cause the cartilage in your knee to wear down and/or tear.
Here are some of the commonly used terms when it comes to knee damage:
- Fissure: A fissure occurs in the articular cartilage when there is a separation within the layers. Some people may not notice anything when they have a fissure, while others will note a “catching” sensation in their knee.
- Thinning: This can be an early sign of arthritis in your knee and can also be caused as a result of an injury. Thinned out cartilage is not as smooth and will not glide as easily.
- Defects: A defect in your knee cartilage can lead to the bone within the joint being exposed. Again, this can occur as a result of arthritis or a traumatic injury.
- Flaps: A flap in your articular cartilage occurs when a portion of the cartilage layer has not adhered properly and can be lifted, or flapped, from its normal position. This scenario will also cause a catching sensation in the knee.
Knee cartilage injuries are very common. If you’re a sports fan, you’ve probably seen countless athletes go out of the game with knee injuries. Or, you yourself may be feeling the effects of age and arthritis in your knees more and more as the years go by.
Which brings us to the next point, what are the signs and symptoms of a torn meniscus or knee cartilage damage?
Signs and Symptoms of a Torn Meniscus and/or Knee Cartilage Damage
Damage to the cartilage in your knee is one of the most common joint injuries and can range from mild to severe. Minor cases of damage may heal on their own with time and rest, however, more serious cases require medical intervention.
Symptoms of cartilage damage in your knee joint include:
- Joint pain that continues even when resting or worsens when you apply weight to the joint
- Swelling in the knee, this can happen immediately or may take hours, even days, to develop
- A clicking, catching, or grinding sensation
It can sometimes be difficult to know if the symptoms you’re experiencing in your knee are from cartilage damage or if it’s another common joint injury, like a sprain.
In any case, your best bet is to head to the doctor to have your knee examined and get a proper diagnosis of your condition.
Meniscus Repair and Knee Cartilage Damage Treatment Options
So, you tore your meniscus or have cartilage damage in your knee joint, what are your treatment options?
- Physical therapy
- Strengthening exercises
- Cortisone shots
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- And now…stem cell shots
If you remember back to the beginning of this article, we mentioned that there are currently 600,000 patients that go under the knife each year here in the United States for knee repair.
What typically happens is, people, start out with physical therapy, cortisone shots, and pain meds, only to realize that their relief is short-term. When they go back to see their doctor, more often than not, they’re told that surgery is their only next option.
However, stem cells for knees are quickly gaining traction and trust in the medical community thanks to its massive success. People are seeing considerable pain relief and healing from stem cell shots.
Risks and Complications Involved With Surgical Intervention
It goes without saying that surgery is a risk. Knee surgery is no exception, there are plenty of risks involved with going under the knife to repair your cartilage damage.
Even if your surgery goes well and it’s considered a success, you can expect months of rehabilitation to follow. Additionally, patients who undergo a surgical knee procedure are often required to wear a brace that limits their mobility and range of motion for weeks, even months following the procedure.
The worst part is, about 20-40% of the time, the meniscus fails to heal after surgery and a second procedure is required. Additionally, it’s very common for the surgical fix to only last a few years before knee pain flairs again due to the constant wearing of the now thinned or missing cartilage.
Given this information, it’s easy to see why people are reluctant to sign up for surgery and are desperately looking for another way to repair their damaged joints.
Stem Cell Therapy for Meniscus Repair and Knee Cartilage Damage
Stem cells taken from a healthy mother’s umbilical cord are concentrated and injected into the knee with high success rates. Stem cell therapy for the knee works in the following ways:
- The cells develop into essential cartilage cells thanks to their ability to regenerate and adapt.
- They work to prevent the inflammation that can worsen symptoms of arthritis.
- They release proteins called cytokines that work to slow degeneration of the cartilage and reduce pain.
There is ongoing research being conducted to determine which stem cell therapy for knee techniques yield the best results, however, the preliminary results are amazing.
It’s unfortunate that many people with knee cartilage damage don’t do anything about the pain and decreased movement because they don’t want to be laid up with a bum knee and physical therapy appointments for months, missing work and family time.
Knee pain sufferers are rejoicing in the fact that they have an alternative option for invasive and painful surgery. Stem cell shots are a safe, pain-free way to help repair and rebuild your knee cartilage, naturally.
Stem cells are a great first line of treatment for individuals who are experiencing knee pain and cartilage damage and view surgery as a last resort option.