Similar to bone marrow, utilizing cells derived from your fat (lipoaspirate) is also a new type of cell based therapy. The available research is showing that similar to bone marrow, fat derived cells have a very powerful ability to restore the cellular balance in a diseased or damaged tendon or joint. As with all cell based therapies a comprehensive evaluation will occur to determine the reasons for your pain. Prior to determining if lipoaspirate is the appropriate biologic for YOUR unique injury or joint disease your already obtained MRI images will be reviewed or one will be ordered and evaluated. Thereafter a specific biologic treatment plan will be developed utilizing the well validated Orthohealing Method algorithms.
You will be positioned comfortably and if needed, oral nitrous oxide (laughing gas) can be used to insure your comfort during the procedure. The skin will be numbed with a local anesthetic and then a thin wand will be inserted into the targeted fat. A solution of sterile water and additional anesthetic wil be injected into the fat. After a brief waiting period to insure complete comfort, the fat is then gently suctioned out. Your fat is then processed, which entails breaking the fat into microscopic pieces, both releasing the powerful cells, growth factors and proteins and also making it into a liquid that is injectable. Under ultrasound guidance and during the same visit, this “micronized” fat is then injected into the damaged tendon or joint. After the procedure, you will have a brief recovery period and then post-procedure instructions and guidance will be reviewed prior to your discharge home.
While early research has shown benefit in treating pain related to more advanced orthopedic injuries and joint disease, fat derived cell therapy may not be an option if you have multiple medical diagnosis, on blood thinners or have active cancers.