Regenerative Treatments for Foot and Ankle Injuries
Injuries of the foot and ankle are common in athletes, individuals who are active and among the elderly. The foot is very prone to injury since it constantly bears the weight of our body when walking, running or even standing. Overworking the foot or being overweight can put cause a lot of stress on the structures of the foot leading to injury. Also, the joints of the foot are prone to degeneration. The white slippery cartilage found between the joints slowly getting thin as we age, leading to chronic painful arthritis.
Fortunately, many of these injuries can be treated conservatively with the use of regenerative medicine. Amniotic stem cell and PRP treatments are innovative, non-invasive treatments that use the body’s own healing mechanism to treat foot injuries.
via Wikimedia Commons
Amniotic stem cell treatment uses stem cells gathered from amniotic fluid. The advantage of using stem cells derived from amniotic fluid is that amniotic fluid is rich with stem cells. Also, amniotic stem cells come from an immune privileged site, this means it won’t cause any allergic reaction or won’t cause any patient rejection once introduced into the affected site.
PRP or platelet-rich plasma uses platelets to heal the injured foot. Every blood cell has a certain role: while blood cells fight invading bacteria and viruses, red blood cells carry oxygen all over the body, platelets is responsible for tissue repair. Every time there is tear or tissue injury in the body, the platelets are the first to rush in and plug that injury to prevent us from bleeding out, and immediately release healing hormones to stimulate local stem cells to regenerate or heal the affected area.
PRP is gathered from the patient’s own blood. It is done by using a syringe and simply extracting the blood, then the blood is placed in a centrifuge to separate to separate the blood cells. Upon separation, the platelets are placed in a syringe to be injected into the affected site.
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