Stem Cell Therapy for Leg Pain
Leg pain, stiffness, or weakness can affect nearly everything we do, making it difficult or impossible to do many of the things that bring us joy.
When your leg hurts, the source of the pain can be a mystery. With so many bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles and other tissue in your legs, the cause of the pain can sometimes be tough to determine.
Do your legs feel stiff and weak when you try to stand after sitting for an extended period? Do you feel an occasional sharp pain in your calf or an ache in your thigh when you walk? Do your knees pop when you climb stairs? Do you cramp up easily? Do you sometimes feel a numb, tingling sensation running down your hips into your upper legs? Does your leg pain begin in one area and move to another, or is it fairly localized?
Answering these questions is the beginning of treating your specific leg pain and getting you back on your feet again, pain free. It is also important to consider these factors:
The location of the pain – is it in your upper leg, lower leg or in the knee joint? Front or back?
The type of pain – is it sharp, dull, buzzing, and are there other symptoms like numbness or tingling?
The onset of the pain — did you notice your leg pain all at once, or was it gradual?
The duration of the pain – does it come and go, or is it chronic?
These symptoms can be caused by conditions including:
Osteoarthritis – wear and tear on the joint that affects hard and soft tissue and can cause pain, stiffness, and weakness.
Rotator Cuff Tears – could be acute (sudden) or progress gradually over time, leading to pain, stiffness, and weakness.
Tendonitis — inflammation often caused by strain or repetitive motion. Symptoms can begin with mild irritation or stiffness and worsen over time, potentially leading to debilitating chronic pain.
Degenerative Disc Disease – Fibrocartilaginous ‘discs’ (picture a jelly donut) surround our spinal cord and cushion our spinal vertebrae. Wear and tear or injury to these joints can lead to chronic, debilitating pain.
Herniated Disc Disease – You know what happens when you squeeze a jelly donut? Something similar can happen to the discs in your back, leading to nucleus pulposus, sometimes called a “slipped disc.” This is when the cushioning material in your spinal discs leaks out, lessening their ability to function as spinal cord protectors and shock absorbers for the vertebrae. This condition causes pain, weakness, and numbness in the back, buttocks, and legs.
Spinal Stenosis – The spinal cord and spinal nerves are surrounded by protective vertebrae and ligaments that hold those vertebrae together. In a healthy spine, these vertebrae and ligaments offer plenty of room for the spinal cord and nerves. Spinal stenosis is an abnormal narrowing of the spinal canal that applies pressure to the spinal cord and nerve roots.
Complex Regional Pain Syndrome – Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (aka: Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) is an uncommon form of chronic pain that usually affects limbs, though the treatment, in this case, involves the spine. Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) typically develops after an injury, surgery, stroke or heart attack. One of the key indicators of CRPS is that the pain is out of proportion to the severity of the initial injury or illness.
Facet Joint Pain – Inflammation or injury to the Facet Joints is one of the most common causes of neck pain or back pain. In fact, Facet Joint Pain, also known as Facet Joint Syndrome or Facet Joint Sprain, accounts for about 30 percent of all reported cases of back pain. Many of these cases are caused by Osteoarthritis.
Sciatica – Sciatica is pain caused by a medical problem in or around the sciatic nerve. Because the Sciatic Nerve runs from the lower back down into each leg, the associated pain may be referred. While lower back pain is the most common symptom of Sciatica, you may also feel pain in your hips, buttocks or legs, often on a specific side of the body.
In the majority of cases, patients who chose stem cell therapy to treat these conditions experienced significantly decreased pain and marked improvement in joint function, especially over time. The time factor is key when considering stem cell treatment for any joint-related pain. Not because stem treatment is temporary, like pain medication or a steroid injection, but because stem cells continue to regenerate over time, replacing diseased and damaged cells with new, healthy cells. For many patients, this means their pain will continue to decrease and function will continue to increase for months, even years, after treatment.
The Effectiveness of Stem Cells in Treating Pain
Regenerative medicine is a new area of medicine that uses stem cells to regenerate tissue and “turn the clock back” to a more active and fulfilling life. We specialize in orthopedic regenerative medicine which has a long history of success scientific studies show the benefit and success of stem cell therapy for joints and back. We practice the safest and most advanced techniques to bring relief to or patients. Our success rate is very high.
Adult stem cells possess several different qualities which allow them to be effective in the treatment of damaged joints. When used to treat pain caused by damaged joints, stem cells:
● Differentiate between and grow into bone, cartilage, tendons, and ligament cells
● Offer anti-inflammatory effects, which reduces further injury
● Recruit other cells necessary to increase cell growth in joints
● Inhibit cell death (apoptosis)
● Enrich blood supply, leading to more healthy tissue regeneration
Specifically, adipose stem cells are effective in treating Osteoarthritis; and bone marrow stem cells have beneficial in Rotator Cuff repair, treating Avascular Necrosis (AVN) in the hip, and assisting with bone union.
The success of these attributes depends on several different factors including disease severity, the type of stem cell used, the procedure chosen, and other factors specific to the patient. But, overall, up to 90 percent of our patients who elect stem cell therapy experience significant, long-term pain relief.