An injury of your knee’s anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL, can be an extremely painful condition with an extensive healing period. Or at least it used to be, when traditional surgery was the only means of treatment. Thanks to medical advances in the field of regenerative medicine, ACL injuries can now be effectively treated with stem cell therapy.
Stem cell therapy is a non-invasive, safe alternative to invasive surgery, and SmartChoice® Stem Cell Institute has been on the cutting-edge of its application. Dr. Garg M.D. is one of the few physicians in the country who offers this advanced procedure for healing, repair and regeneration of tissue using adult stem cells from the patient’s own body.
Surgery vs. Stem Cell Therapy
Traditional procedures for treating an ACL injury involved removing the damaged or torn ligament and replacing it with a ligament either taken from a different part of the body or from a donor. Recuperation time for full recovery typically took anywhere from 6 months to one year. Even after a year of healing, the majority of athletes didn’t perform at the same level they did prior to the injury.
Rather than removing and replacing the damaged ligament, stem cell treatments aim to grow a new ligament inside the knee joint. Adult stem cells are injected into the injury site, generating new cells that repair the damaged knee and can result in a full and rapid recovery.
ACL Injury Types
Stem cell therapy has been effective for both of the following types of ACL injuries:
- Partial tears, where some fibers are still intact or stretched.
- Full tears with no retraction, where the ligament is torn but fibers are held in position by the ligament's protective sheath.
In the case of partial tears, patients have reported healing and the ability to perform most of their activities within a few weeks after the procedure. Full tear with no retraction recuperation may take longer, but the healing and regenerative activity is just as robust. The protective sheath around the ACL is thought to serve as a kind of guide that helps ensure the injected stem cells go to work at the precise location where they need to be. For patients with full tears with retraction, the effectiveness of stem cell therapy will vary – stem cell therapy may not work and unfortunately surgery could be the only option.
Stem Cell Treatment Benefits
In addition to a much more rapid recovery period, stem cell therapy comes with far fewer risks than traditional ACL surgeries. Dr. Garg performs the procedure in an office setting using only a local anesthetic to numb the injection site. This can be a much more comfortable and less risky option than surgery in an operating room using general anesthetic.
Stem cell treatments use blood, fat and marrow from your own body, which eliminates any risk of your body rejecting the materials. Because it’s a non-invasive procedure, you aren’t subjected to the same high risk of infection an incision poses, nor are you subjected to unsightly scarring.
You may feel a bit of pain and soreness around the injection site for several days following the procedure, but rest, ice and over-the-counter pain medication is typically all you will require to alleviate it. Instead of being bed-ridden or on crutches for weeks or months, you will be able to resume your normal activities rather quickly, with some patients able to return to work as soon as the following day.
For more information or to schedule your free consultation, contact us at www.smartchoicestemcell.com or call us at 1-888-434-6841 today.