Given the limitations of several conventional methods to treat a wide variety of diseases and injuries, stem cell therapy has begun to gain in popularity. The evidence supporting the field of Regenerative Medicine, which involves using stem cells to regenerate healthy, functional tissue, has indeed been accumulating in recent years.
There are a number of different types of stem cells that have been explored for their therapeutic potential. Mesenchymal stem cells have become a preferred option for therapy because of their ability to differentiate into several different types of adult tissue and to be transplanted safely and effectively into patients.
One-way mesenchymal stem cells confer their therapeutic benefits is through paracrine effects that are achieved by the secretion of extracellular vesicles, some of which are exosomes. Exosomes are between 30 and 100 nanometers (nms) in diameter and exist in blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and other bodily fluids.
A recent review, published in Cell Transplantation, covered research showing that mesenchymal stem cell exosomes are therapeutically advantageous for the management of several conditions, including Parkinson’s disease, osteoarthritis, and stroke.
The review discusses, for instance how in models of Parkinson’s disease, exosomes have been shown to provide neuroprotection. MSC-derived exosomes also appear to inhibit inflammation in the context of osteoarthritis and also to stimulate repair in damaged tissue. Further, specific exosome biomarkers, miR-9 and miR-124, have proven to be promising in diagnosing the severity of stroke.
Based on recent research covered in this review, stem cell-derived exosomes have significant therapeutic potential. Though this review focuses specifically on the relevance of exosomes in Parkinson’s disease, osteoarthritis, and stroke, exosomes will likely provide benefits for patients in a variety of contexts and will prove to be an important part of Regenerative Medicine.
Chang, Y-H, et al. (2018). Exosomes and stem cells in degenerative disease diagnosis and therapy. Cell Transplantation, 27(3), 349-363.
Over 1 million patients worldwide have been treated with adult stem cells and have benefited from them. And nearly 20 000 adult stem cell transplants were performed in the United States in 2014 alone! How is that possible? What are stem cells? What do they do to your body? And why are so many benefiting from them? We take a look at these important questions surrounding the benefits of stem cells, as well as how CBD can help you get the most benefits from stem cells.
What Are Stem Cells?
Stem cells are a very special kind of human cells. They are cells of the body and are therefore somatic cells, found in your bone marrow and fat cells. They are a part of your body’s natural repair process. But why are they so special? Well, they have the ability to develop into many different cell types. This can range from anything from muscle, cartilage and even bone! Stem cells can divide and become differentiated, and are therefore used as a therapy called stem cell therapy. Stem cell therapy involves using a patient’s own stem cells to repair damaged tissues. When an organism grows, the stem cells specialize and take on specific functions, including skin, nerves, blood, muscle, and liver.
Because of their magical transformative powers, they have the potential to treat a number of diseases, including diabetes, Parkinson’s and even cancer. They also have the potential to treat a number of serious injuries, from a damaged knee, to even treating spinal cord injury! Eventually, they may even be used to regenerate entire organs, decreasing the need for organ transplants. Now that we know what stem cells are and how they work, let’s have a look at five of their biggest benefits.
1. Avoid Invasive Surgery and Related Risks
One of the biggest benefits of stem cells and using them in stem cell therapy is that it allows patients who would possibly have required heavy surgery to not have any such invasive surgery. Stem cell therapy uses material already in the patient’s body, which makes it minimally invasive and also cuts out the need for an overly stressful, invasive surgical procedure. Most stem cell therapy is performed as an outpatient procedure, i.e. you can just have it done in the doctor’s office! No need for an overnight hospital stay and those ridiculously high associated medical costs.
Your doctor will first conduct a bone marrow aspiration, in which he removes stem cells from an area of the body, such as the hipbone, through a long needle. These cells are then delivered to the area of injury. Once there they work their magic to create healthy new tissue to replace a damaged muscle, tendon, ligament, cartilage or bone. They become healthy new cells that your body desperately needs.
2. Minimal Procedure & Recovery Time
One of the greatest stem cell benefits is the minimal amount of time involved in the whole therapy, from the actual procedure to the recovery time required afterward. Procedures generally last from two to five hours, depending on the type of cell treatment being performed. After the minor procedure, your activity level may be a bit limited for the first week. This is merely to let the stem cell therapy process to work uninterrupted and without any possible inflammation. After just seven days you should be able to return to your normal activity! Your treatment will include some monitoring after the treatment, to ensure everything is working as it should.
3. Can Offer Pain Relief
Stem cell therapy is highly sought out by patients who experience chronic pain. As it should be! Because of stem cells’ ability to restore and regenerate, being used in pain management is a logical step. The use of stem cell therapy is being studied for a number of chronic pain conditions, particularly pain in the knees, hips, elbows, and back. Stem cell therapy can offer pain relief in the way that it reduces the inflammation which causes chronic pain. It also helps to heal regenerative conditions that lead to pain, such as arthritis. Promising results have been found in research into the use of stem cells to reduce arthritis pain. As every patient and their condition is different, long-lasting pain relief can never be guaranteed by any doctor.
4. No Risk of Rejection
When you receive stem cells from a donor, there’s always the risk that your body will reject them. Because the stems are coming from another person’s body, many complications can arise. The most common complication is called graft-versus-host disease. This is when blood cells formed from the donor’s stem cells believe your own cells are foreign and attack them. On the other hand, harvesting stem cells extracted from your own body to generate new cells and tissues means there is no risk of rejection!
5. Potential to Discover New Treatments
Because of the nature of stem cells, the possibilities for treating new diseases and finding new cures is endless. Stem cell therapy research provides great potential for discovering treatments and cures to a variety of diseases. Advanced research is going as far as limbs and organs being grown in a lab from stem cells, which are then used in transplants. With stem cells, scientists are able to test millions of potential drugs and medicine, without the use of animal or human testers.
How Can CBD Help with Stem Cell Treatment?
We’ve seen how amazing stem cells are. Now let’s have a look at how much more amazing they can be when combined with the effects of CBD! According to results from multiple trials, cannabidiol, or CBD, can help increase the number of stem cells growing within the body. CBD has even shown to positively contribute to the movement of the stem cells within the body. They can then do what they do best – help heal the body and reduce pain.
Nearly 20% of those who went through hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) used cannabis. Not only was it used to treat their physical and emotional pain, but it was also used in the hope that it will contribute to the replacement of bone marrow that has been destroyed by cancer. Because both CBD and stem cells have been seen to reduce pain, combined the possibilities for better treatments are endless.
How Can I Experience the Benefits of Stem Cells?
You’ve heard about the many benefits of stem cells. You’ve heard how popular it is. And you’ve heard the vast amount of injuries, diseases, and pain that it can treat. Perhaps it’s about time you had a look at it as a treatment for your condition. Whether you’re looking for an alternative treatment to your sports injury, your multiple sclerosis or your chronic fatigue syndrome, we’re here to help you along the way.
Get in touch with us to see if you are a candidate for Stem Cell Therapy. Also, check out our website shop to see available products.
Do you have questions?
We have answers. Speak with a Stemedix Care Coordinator today with no obligation. Give us a call!
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