Sciatic nerve pain is a debilitating condition that affects how well you live your life. The pain typically starts in the lower spine area and it can expand into the legs and lower abdominal region. One of the main reasons the sciatic nerve becomes inflamed is that a disc in the lower spine is deteriorating. The deterioration is often caused by the loss of healthy cells in the disc. Regenerative medicine in NY uses stem cells in your body to help the cells in the disc regenerate and restore the integrity of the disc. Here is an overview of how stem cells are taken from your pelvis and placed into a deteriorating disc.
Removing Stem Cells
Adult stem cells have to be removed from the bone marrow in your pelvis before they can be implanted into a deteriorating disc. Bone marrow is often used because it has the greatest concentration of stem cells in the body. The procedure is typically done in an operating room in a hospital over a period of two to three hours.
The surgeon will usually give you a general anesthetic that will put you to sleep. In some cases, an epidural shot is used to numb the spinal and pelvic area.
Small incision holes are placed over your pelvic area so the surgeon can insert a special syringe used for collecting bone marrow. The syringe is placed through the holes and pressed through the outer bone of the pelvis and into the bone marrow. The surgeon will remove between one to two pints of bone marrow from the pelvis. This represents about 4% of the total amount of bone marrow in the pelvis and your body will naturally reproduce over a period of several weeks.
Cleaning the Marrow
The bone marrow will be filtered and cleaned to remove any fat particles and bone fragments in it. The blood is then removed from the bone marrow. The stem cells are then extracted from the blood using a process called apheresis. The blood is put into a machine that spins it around until the plasma and the stem cells are separated. The stem cells are then collected so they can be implanted into the deteriorating disc.
Implanting Stem Cells
The stem cells are placed a clean and sterile syringe. The surgeon will use an x-ray machine to help them locate the bone marrow in the deteriorating disc. The stem cells will then be injected into the bone marrow in the disc. This will help the disc to regenerate the cells it needs to produce healthy bone and relieve your condition.
Your pelvic and spinal area will be sore for a few days and you will usually be prescribed a painkiller to help you deal with the discomfort.