When you live with chronic pain, almost any treatment option that offers relief can be tempting. Undergoing surgery for joint pain is a serious decision. Surgery comes with many risks, including potentially long and painful recovery times, and there is no guarantee that surgical treatments will resolve your pain. Before deciding whether surgery is the right step for you, take a moment to consider the following reasons why regenerative medicine, also known as stem cell therapy, might be an effective option.
Regenerative Medicine Is Minimally Invasive
The body’s natural response to surgical intervention is to create inflammation. Post-surgical swelling can be serious enough to prevent or limit movement and slow recovery time. Stem cell therapy is minimally invasive — involving only administrations at the injured site. A regenerative medicine provider first prepares the treatment area by applying a local anesthetic, which can minimize discomfort.
Instead of causing inflammation, stem cells have the ability to reduce swelling and support the body’s natural healing response. There is typically little or no downtime with stem cell therapy. Most patients can return to normal daily activity, following some post-procedure protocols, as soon as they leave the clinic.
Stem Cell Therapy Has Fewer Risks and Complications
No medical procedure is 100% risk-free. However, few complications are associated with stem cell therapy, especially when compared to surgery. The risks of even the most common surgical procedures include infection, damage to nerves or blood vessels, deep vein thrombosis, and adverse reactions to anesthesia.
Stem cell therapy does pose a few risks, most of which are mild and rare. Headache, nausea, swelling, or itching at the injection site are possible. Infection due to stem cell therapy is possible but extremely rare.
Regenerative Medicine Is More Cost-Effective
Stem cell therapy is not inexpensive, and most costs may have to be paid out of pocket since insurance, today, is still not covering treatments. Even with these considerations, the long recuperation and additional costs of surgery can add up. The costs associated with a possible long recuperation time, child care, and potentially lost wages may outweigh the costs of stem cell therapy considerably.
What Is Best for You?
Ultimately, each patient needs to do their individual research and weigh the pros and cons of any medical options before making an informed decision. Stem cell therapy is utilized to manage many conditions, including neurodegenerative and autoimmune conditions, and it serves as a potentially helpful approach in pain management contexts. Before deciding on a risky surgery, consult with a regenerative medicine specialist at Stemedix to learn more about your available options. If surgery is ultimately the best route for your recovery and wellness, stem cell therapy can still be an excellent post-surgery recovery tool.