Platelet Rich Plasma Leads to A New Way to Walk

Walking on a waterbed is just no fun. It’s unstable and you wobble – a lot.

That’s how Rachel McCarroll felt when she walked. A 2010 fall injured her right leg and led her California doctors to put a pin in her right femur. The Phoenix resident didn’t feel comfortable from the start. “I assumed they must have touched the muscle,” she said. “Nothing showed up in the MR, X-rays, or anything. After they let me go at the hospital, it still hurt.”

McCarroll, 74, was told the pain was part of the healing after the operation and would improve. But she told the doctors the pain was in her hip, not her leg. And she didn’t improve. “My feet felt like they were walking on a water bed,” McCarroll said. “I had no balance. It hurt worse than having a baby.”

Physical therapy didn’t help either and her internal medicine specialist suggested she visit Southwest Spine & Sports to talk about Platelet Rich Plasma. “It will rejuvenate your muscles,” he said. Retired from work in the California Court System, McCarroll first learned about Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) on the Health Channel and thought the treatment could help. But she didn’t expect immediate relief after six years of wobbling discomfort. That’s what she experienced when she was treated by Dr. Michael Wolff, MD at Southwest Spine & Sports.

“The first shot was awesome,” McCarroll said about her initial PRP treatment. “By the time I left the office, there was no wobble. My feet were already better.” A second session helped, too, but the muscles still weren’t at full strength. An unwise choice to leg-press too much weight caused a slight setback. But a third PRP treatment put McCarroll back on track.

A diabetic, McCarroll notes she still uses a cane, but can walk well and without that waterbed feel. PRP is an all natural alternative that does not raise blood sugars like steroids often do in people with diabetes.

What are PRP and stem cell therapy?

PRP is one of the most exciting emerging forms of regenerative medicine for soft tissue injuries. Safe, effective, and all natural, PRP heals damaged joints and soft tissue injuries while also relieving pain. PRP therapy uses a small sample of the patient’s own blood, spun in a special type of centrifuge to concentrate platelets. This solution is then injected into the injured area. An alternative to surgery, PRP injections are getting great results for patients of all ages.

Multinucleated Stem Cells (MSC), stem cells for short, are potent and valuable healers. They have the unique ability to stimulate naturally and “morph” into healthy, mature cells to replace injured cells. When handled and injected correctly, stem cells help set up a healing environment and stimulate a regenerative process to create healthy tissue. In the process, cells differentiate, proliferate, and mature in the environment they’re placed. Simply put, this means stem cells are able to transform and develop into different types of healthy mature cells including bone cartilage, muscle, tendon, and ligament. Click here to learn more about stem cells.

SWSS physicians have been practicing regenerative medicine for nearly a decade – keeping up with modern advances, participating in research, and helping patients live pain-free, from elite athletes to weekend warriors. In further supporting advancement in the field, SWSS participates in clinical research in the field of biologics.

Stem cell therapy has been in use since the early 1990s. Recent advances in technology have improved the ease and safety of the therapy. Autologous stem cell therapy – meaning use of cells from your own body – is quickly gaining popularity as a means to treat painful injuries. Autologous stem cell treatment is a simple outpatient procedure at Southwest Spine & Sports. The all-natural therapy helps a wide range of patients, from those with acute muscle and/or ligament injuries, like professional athletes, to those with joint pain from arthritis, and low back pain from injured discs and degenerative disc disease. Stem cells used for treatment can be easily harvested from a patient’s bone marrow taken from the back of the hip. Cells are immediately prepared for reinjection using a specialized centrifuge system to isolate and concentrate desired stem cells under sterile conditions. Patients’ own fresh stem cells are then injected into the injured area, always guided by either ultrasound or fluoroscopy. At Southwest Spine & Sports the entire procedure is performed in our comfortable, state-of-the-art facility under conscious sedation and takes only a few hours.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, click here or call us today at (480) 860-8998.