With more lifts opening early in Colorado this year, don’t forget your winter sports checklist:
• Ski pass ready?
• Gear sorted?
• Skis waxed?
• Most importantly: Is your body ready?
If you hesitated to check off that last item, you’re not alone. Researchers estimate that about 600,000 people nationally are injured each year as a result of skiing and snowboarding. Many of these thrill-seekers resume activity prematurely only to cause lingering symptoms that carry on to subsequent seasons.
As the snow piles up and we all brave the traffic to hit the slopes, a high number of snowsports enthusiasts will bring home a souvenir in the form of new knee injuries, and others will aggravate older ones.
But that doesn’t have to put a damper on the activities you enjoy most! If you take the time to nurse your injuries appropriately and also know a few basic things the world of regenerative medicine has to offer.
Regenerative Medicine has evolved into a rapidly expanding field with increasing applications for treating musculoskeletal and sports injuries. Using treatments like stem cell therapy, platelet rich plasma (PRP), and exosomes, surgery has been delayed or averted altogether in many instances.
In fact, surgical repair of the knee meniscus often leads to further joint instability and commits one to further surgical interventions down the line – a recipe for early arthritis. PRP, stem cell therapy, and exosomes are an attractive and healthier alternative.
How Stem Cell Therapy Can Help
Stem cell therapy can have amazing healing and anti-pain effects for joints and soft tissues. These sophisticated technologies can be used to address a range of conditions like arthritis, degenerative disc disease, muscle/ligament tears, tendinitis, sports-related injuries and more.
Our adult bodies contain millions of stem cells that can be extracted from our own tissue. We harvest the stem cells from your adipose tissue – fat in your “love handles” or abdomen – and inject it into the injury site. Precision is of paramount importance for an optimal outcome. Therefore, our harvesting and injection procedures are performed by our highly experienced physicians using real time guided imaging techniques.
Stem cells and other cells multiply, repair and rebuild the damaged tissue – an accelerated healing response that reduces pain, promotes increased strength and improves joint and tissue function.
Potential candidates have typically tried other medical options for treating their issue with no results. Popular among athletes, stem cell therapies are for people looking for a noninvasive treatment for their ailments.
How Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Can Help
Although closely related to stem cell therapy, platelet rich plasma therapy is a biological-based treatment modality unique unto its own. Platelets are blood constituents that aid in the healing process. Contained within are healing factors that enhance one’s natural ability to mend injury. By concentrating the number of platelets in a targeted area, these healing factors are deliberately focused right at the site of action.
When used in conjunction, PRP enhances the performance of stem cells. When used in isolation, PRP attracts stem cells out of fat, bone marrow, and other regions in the periphery to the area of injection in order to initiate repair.
How Exosomes Can Help
One of the latest discoveries in the field of biological based therapies, exosomes have shown tremendous promise and effectiveness. Exosomes are constituents within stem cells and serve as their primary means of communicating with other repair cells. When injected into the region of injury, exosomes initiate a profound repair reaction that ameliorates pain and disability.