Stem cell for bad joints

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  • Stem cell for bad joints
  • deserter
    Member

    Hi

    Snapped my acl 15-20 years ago and never got it fixed, I’ve lived relatively normal since but my knee has been getting worse the last year, got an xray and it getting a bit worn out, I’m way too young for a replacement so started looking at stem cell therapy, has anyone had it done and could give me some feedback

    Thanks in advance

    CountZero
    Member

    I think it’s still far too early for it to be used as a regular means of repairing joint damage, I have osteoarthritis in two places under my left kneecap and it’s far too early to even consider any remedial work on it. I’ve seen something about a 3D printed replacement for the pad that sits there using a special type of porous plastic that allows the regrowth of the natural material, but it’s very new and not a generally available fix. I think it’ll be a mix of techniques using bioplastics and stem cells but possibly not for a while yet.
    I’d be thrilled to be proved wrong, and I’d actually be happy to put myself forward for inclusion in a series of volunteer operations using such techniques, before my knee gets any worse.
    http://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/news/general-news/2017/may/new-study-identifies-stem-cells-that-can-help-repair-knee-joints.aspx
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130124163246.htm
    The Science Daily article looks particularly promising, it’s just a shame it’s in the States, otherwise I’d be putting myself forward immediately, I think I fit the criteria pretty closely.

    shermer75
    Member

    This sounds new and exciting! Let us know how it goes!!

    deserter
    Member

    One of my work colleagues had it done about 4 months ago, before he had to wear a brace and said he woke every night in pain, he says he feels a lot better now although he’s 65 so probably aches a bit anyway

    My physio reckons about 60-70% success with it

    Be nice to hear from more peoole who have had it though before I shell out

    silverneedle
    Member

    Im interested in it as well. what are the drawbacks that are known about? How about the increased risk of cancer or is that something that has been addressed now?

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    any chance of a total body job?
    so far, I have had a right knee reconstruction, a right ankle arthrodesis (fusion) and at present I am waiting for a date for a left hip replacement.

    arthritis is a bastard. 😆

    shermer75
    Member

    One of the physios I was working with on placement reckoned you could promote cartilage re-growth through appropraiate loading (resistance exercises) however I haven’t had a chance to check out the evidence yet…

    shermer75
    Member

    Interesting (and current!) article on the link below about the effect on cartilage when loading a joint. It’s a little jargon heavy but the gist of it is that

    1) moderate use can lead to cartilage regrowth,
    2) non-use can cause the cartilage to waste away and
    3) over loading can result in the cartilage being permanently damaged.

    http://www.mdpi.com/2411-5142/1/2/154/pdf

    CountZero
    Member

    One of my work colleagues had it done about 4 months ago, before he had to wear a brace and said he woke every night in pain, he says he feels a lot better now although he’s 65 so probably aches a bit anyway

    Interesting, I had no idea that this form of treatment was actually available, I’d assumed from bits and bobs I’d read it was still very much at clinical trial stage.
    This is something I need to do more digging into, I think.

    mcj78
    Member

    Hi all, been back & forth recently to consultant for a knee problem that’s been getting slowly worse over the years – basically several areas of full thickness articular cartilage loss – and trying to figure out what’s the best way forward to prevent any worsening of the deterioration & strengthen the surrounding muscles to take some of the strain off the joint.

    Re. cartilage regrowth – this can apparently be done via micro abrasion of the affected bone surface & maybe also via loading exercises as mentioned above, both methods essentially irritatate the affected area which stimulates the body to produce new cartilage at the point of injury to protect the bone surface however it’s not articular cartilage that regrows ( the dense, firm stuff that was there originally ) but fibral cartilage which is a lot softer & more prone to further damage leaving you back where you started. The consultant offered me the micro abrasion treatment if I felt I really wanted to try it, but advised leaving it as a last resort as he felt at this stage it wouldn’t make a noticeable difference.

    On the stem cell therapy – the consultant I spoke to said it had been available on the nhs at one point but they’ve stopped it as they felt it wasn’t offering enough vfm… so I don’t know if it actually worked at all or if it wasn’t offering enough of an improvement in patients to justify the cost of the treatment.

    I’ve been sticking to the road bike & it’s been fine recently so I’ll persevere with that & hope for the best!

    JackHammer
    Member

    That Supervet fella uses stem cells all the time to fix robotics to dogs and cats.

    Premier Icon jambalaya
    Subscriber

    Great thread OP, in the same boat (broke one ACL 35 years ago and the orher 4 years ago, lots if menuscus damage in recent injury). I am 54

    I would be very interested in stories / links, I had thought it was just experimental but it sounds not.

    As for NHS / VFM most people wouldn’t spend £2k+ on a bike either. I’d wager many of us would value knee “repair” as highly valuable to our lives

    Premier Icon LittleNose
    Subscriber

    similar boat here as a result of breaking my femur leaving me with one leg 40mm shorter than the other for 20 odd years – the length has now been corrected, but the arthritic damage has been done.

    I’m hoping this kind of treatment becomes mainstream in the next 5-10 years

    blader1611
    Member

    I thought they could perform micro fracture surgery in the affected area which was to encourage cell growth from the stem cells that would release from the micro fractures. That was my understanding when i had it done 6 years ago but to be honest i kinda stopped listening as they were reeling off a long list of things that needed doing to put my leg back together.

    Premier Icon ahsat
    Subscriber

    This is really interesting thread and fascinating science.

    Genuine question OP of why you say you are too young for a knee replacement? I know it might mean you have to have it redone in 15-20 years.

    mrlebowski
    Member

    Google Cartistem.

    I think it maybe at stage 3 trials or approved..

    mangoman
    Member

    Slightly different to stem cell therapy but I’ll tell you my knee cartilage story.

    15 years ago I lost a large piece of bone from my medial condyle following a small, unnoticed break. The technical term for this injury is Osteochondritis Dissecans.

    After a few operations to remove bits of bone, I finally had cartilage from my knee harvested and grown in a lab over a few months (autologous chondrocyte implantation). Once there was enough cartilage present I had a bone graft to fill in the crater, with bone taken from my shin, and then the new cartilage layered over the top. I think all in all it was about a 6 months process but I had numerous surgeries before this stage so can’t be sure.

    All in all this was probably the best procedure for someone in their early 20s with a large joint defect, but probably not for someone suffering general wear a tear. In order to get the correct joint surface to mould from the cartilage repair I ’sat’ my leg in a machine that gently bent and straightened my leg, for 6 hours a day, for 3 months. After that there was months of physiotherapy to strengthen the joint (I had been on crutches for the best part of 2 years though). I recently have a scan and the joint surface looks good, with only one small ‘bump’ that can sometimes cause a bit of pain.

    Long story short, I think injecting stems cells directly in to a joint can help cartilage regeneration, but how the cartilage decides to grow is down to the patient and will take time to get right.

    deserter
    Member

    Ok full disclaimer and to answer some of the questions, I emigrated to Canada and over here its available but you pay, my local gp is also a naturopath and does it for $5300 canadian, I’ve seen a surgeon who said ‘its not worth repairing my acl at this point and as I’m 40 I wont get a knee replacement for around 20 years as they don’t want to do it twice’
    I have a very physical job and my knee has gone very weak and lets go a lot, most days I get home limping, physio is trying to sort me out but says after all this time I’m so twisted and out of balance its going to take a long time. I’m currently trying my hardest to strengthen the muscles, since starting this thread I’ve decided I’m going to go for it, waiting list is till October so its obviously popular. So for all interested I will definately revisit the thread

    deserter
    Member

    If anyone fancies an all inclusive aparently its popular to to Mexico for treatment

    Premier Icon jambalaya
    Subscriber

    @ashat they don’t want to give me a knee replacement at 54 as I can still walk ( 🙁 ) and as they only last 10 years id you are active and can only be done 2 possibly 3 times they don’t want you to outlive the knee. My guess is once you do it’s a fused joint or a wheel chair.

    We had a knee replacement thread as sone stw-ers have had that done

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