discogenic low back pain?
Lumbar intervertebral discs are a common cause of chronic low back pain. A fissure or tear in the outer fibrous portion of the disc, the annulus fibrosus, can allow some of the inner liquid portion, the nucleus pulposus, the leak out. This can lead to a chronic inflammatory response, ingrowth of nerves around the fissure, and increased sensitization of the disc. The gold standard method for diagnosis of
What is platelet-rich plasma (PRP)?
Platelet-rich plasma is
How does intradiscal PRP work?
After the painful disc(s) is/are identified via provocative discography, the PRP solution can then be injected back into the problematic disc(s) using x-ray (fluoroscopic) guidance. The PRP solution then stimulates the body’s healing response. As the disc heals, the patient’s pain and overall function improve.
Am I a candidate for intradiscal PRP injection?
Intradiscal PRP injection is typically reserved for patients who have chronic low back pain that has failed to respond to conservative treatment options such as medications, physical therapy, chiropractic, and epidural steroid injections, and for whom surgery is the only other option. Additionally,
What are the results of intradiscal PRP?
There are now multiple studies demonstrating that, in properly identified patients, intradiscal PRP injections can provide improvements in pain and function. Patient satisfaction scores are consistently
If you’ve been suffering from chronic low back pain despite medications, physical therapy, chiropractic, and injections, and are hoping to avoid surgery, you may be a candidate for intradiscal PRP. For
After graduating from Lincoln Memorial University’s DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine,
However, as we all grow into adulthood we have less and less of these stems cells, therefore we have less and less
The excitement about stem cells rests in the belief that since they have the ability to form any kind of cells we could use them to repair any damaged cells in the body. For example, for patients with damage to the heart muscle, stems theoretically could be injected into the heart to repair the damage and allow the heart to function normally.
The same idea exists for any disease process such as brain disease, spinal cord injury and even arthritis in the knee, hip and shoulder.
Despite this, there are many concerns about stems cells. One of the main concerns is whether these cells could become
One main unknown about stem cells is how they are triggered to start growing into different cells and what ultimately stops them from growing. We do not know if that by simply injecting the cells into a damaged body part will cause them to grow and to perform
Currently, the use of stem cells is not FDA-approved for use within the United States in clinical practice unless in a research setting. Therefore, most stem cell treatments being currently advertised on TV or on the internet do not have official FDA sanction unless it
And, even in those approved studies, the FDA has restricted how the stem cells can be used. The cells are approved to removed or harvested from the patient, purified and re-inserted
These guidelines by the FDA make it difficult to perform clinical research in the U.S. on the
Patients who want to use stems cells to treat a medical condition are best served by finding an accredited research project treating their
So although stem cells hold great future promise there are many current unknowns that will limit their application in treating diseases.
Recent Articles By Dr. Best
Lumbar Discography Dr. Craig BestWhat is lumbar discography? Provocative lumbar discography is the gold standard diagnostic test to precisely confirm or exclude the intervertebral disc as a cause of low back pain. Using fluoroscopic (x-ray) guidance, needles are...read more
Spinal Cord Stimulators What are they and what conditions they treat. Dr. Craig BestWhat is a spinal cord stimulator?A spinal cord stimulator (SCS) is a non-surgical treatment for chronic pain conditions that uses electrical signals to block nerves of the spine that...read more