What are they?
Stem cells are basic types of cells which have the ability to form different structures such as cartilage, bone and many more. Adult or Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) can be used to repair or regenerate damaged tissues.
Where Do They Come From?
Mesenchymal Stem Cells can be harvested from various locations in the body including bone marrow, adipose tissue (fat) and peripheral blood. We use cells from the bone marrow as they can be used in their natural state and do not need any chemical treatments. We harvest them from the thigh bone and use a laboratory stirrer before spinning them in a centrifuge to concentrate them.
Where Can They Be Used?
The treatment is carried out keyhole (hip arthroscopy) and unlike other techniques, involves a single procedure. The damaged area of cartilage is shaved away and the minced cartilage tissue collected (Autocart). The bony bed is prepared so that it is ready to receive the stem cells/cartilage mix. This is injected onto the damaged area to fill the defect. Once the graft is in place, it is then sealed in place using a combination of biological glue and further concentrated stem cells.The most common area of damage is the socket of the hip. It can be used for head damage, but in our experience, that may not be as successful.