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Can Regenerative Medicine Help a Meniscus Tear?

Can Regenerative Medicine Help a Meniscus Tear?

Any injury to your knee is never good news, which very much includes meniscus tears. Each year in the United States, there are more than 500,000 meniscus tears. While surgery is one of the more effective treatment options, it may not be your only solution for restoring function to your knee.

Here at Western Orthopaedics, our team of musculoskeletal experts offers regenerative medicine, which is an all-natural, surgery-free approach to managing joint damage like meniscus tears.

Read on to explore whether this innovative approach can help with your meniscus tear.

Meniscus basics

Your knees are the largest joints in your body, which makes sense given their responsibilities in providing you with mobility. To ensure that you can get from point A to B with ease, your knees contain soft, connective tissues that provide support, cushioning, and stability.

In each of your knees, you have two wedge-shaped pieces of cartilage called menisci that act as shock absorbers between your thighbones and your shinbones.

As we mentioned, tears in these tissues are common and can occur as a result of an acute injury or due to degenerative changes in your knee.

One of the major hurdles with this type of damage is that your cartilage, in general, doesn’t enjoy a good supply of blood, which means these soft tissues have a tough time regenerating or repairing themselves.

When it comes to your meniscus, this same problem exists — the outer third of your meniscus (the red zone) contains adequate blood supply, but the inner two-thirds (the white zone) does not. This means that any tear that involves the white zone is more problematic since blood can’t deliver the nutrients your meniscus needs to heal properly.

Enter regenerative medicine

The goal of regenerative medicine is to use the incredibly powerful regenerative resources that already exist in the human body to repair, regenerate, and rebuild tissue and organs.

When it comes to your menisci, our goal is to redirect regenerative assets into the tissue so that it has the resources necessary to repair the damage.

We offer several types of regenerative medicine, including:

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy

With PRP therapy, we draw a sample of your own blood and isolate the platelets. We then inject this concentrate into your damaged meniscus. The PRP releases growth factors that aid in healing.

Autologous stem cell therapy

Stem cells are the building blocks upon which all other cells are created. With our stem cell therapy, we harvest stem cells from your own adipose tissue or bone marrow and re-inject them into your knee. The goal here is that the stem cells transform into the cells your meniscus needs to regenerate itself.

Donor stem cells

The stem cells in your body aren’t as powerful as those that are found in early human development, which is why we offer donor stem cells that are ethically sourced from donor umbilical or placental tissue and/or fat.

To determine whether regenerative medicine is a viable option for your meniscus tear, your first step is to make an appointment with one of our orthopedic specialists for a full evaluation. To get started, simply contact one of our two offices in Denver or Arvada, Colorado.

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