Disc Stem Cell Success, More of the Story Unfolds
POSTED ON 6/28/2011 IN Spine BY Christopher Centeno
JS is a long-standing patient who we were managing with steroid epidurals for years. He had a large L5-S1 disc bulge and ultimately decided to undergo a Regenexx-C disc procedure. He did very well, reporting dramatically improved function, a decrease in his medications, as well as being able to sit longer and do thing like Jet Ski. He also hasn't needed an epidural since 2009, after years of needing them several times a year (usually before tax season, as he works as an accountant). His pre-op disc stem cell injection MRI was dramatic in that it demonstrated a huge disc bulge, ballooning out from the L5-S1 disc. After he reported his dramatic success with the disc stem cell injection, we did obtain a follow-up MRI, but I was frankly too busy to spend time with the before/after films. Yesterday, while getting our disc stem cell data together for publication, I finally reviewed the films. Since they are as impressive as his reported clinical result, I thought they were worth sharing. The pre stem cell injection films are on the left, with the 5 month post stem cell injection films on the right. Note that the before side view (left upper image) has a large "beer belly" in the back of the lowest disc (L5-S1-in the red dashed circle). The before stem cell top view (left lower image) shows the same large bulge in another view (red dashed line). The matched after films on the right show that in both side view (right upper image) and top down view (right lower image), the disc bulge has all but disappeared (yellow dashed line). Can every patient that undergoes the Regenexx-C stem cell procedure for the disc expect these dramatic results? NO. Here's a link to a disc stem cell patient that didn't get these same results. However, since this outcome was achieved with a disc stem cell injection and without surgically removing pieces of the disc, we're very encouraged that this much less invasive procedure is clearly a next generation option for appropriately vetted patients considering disc surgery.
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