After undergoing stem cell and platelet treatments for knee, hip and spine, Dr. Norman Deitch journals his experience
I decided to undergo the new Regenexx procedures for my spine, both of my knees and my right hip in September. Prior treatments I had performed were the PRP and SD procedure on my left knee and right hip, which brought pain relief. However, after about 20 months my hip began to become more painful. I decided that I would ask my specialists, Dr. Ron Cohen and Dr. Jason Miller to work on me with our new enhanced cell based technologies. So here it is, three weeks since the work on my spine was completed and two weeks after my knees and hip were treated and I wanted to write about my experience and progress I have made as a result.
First, let me describe my symptoms prior to my procedures. In 2008, I was advised by two well known orthopedic surgeons that I should have a total left knee replacement. I was suffering from advanced arthritis due to injuries suffered during many years of tennis, skiing, running etc. In 2009, I suffered an accident while playing with my grandkids. I suffered with right groin pain, anterior leg pain and posterior buttocks pain. My MRI’s showed a severely degenerated hip joint with bone spurs (osteophytes) attached to the acetabulum. Again, I was advised to undergo a total hip replacement. Since I had many patients who did not have successful joint replacement outcomes, I resisted and became determined to research and find an alternative path. I started in 2009 with PRP made from a bedside centrifuge and received injections to both joints. I had a total of three injections of PRP in my left knee and one on my right hip. I avoided additional treatment to the hip as the PRP injection was so painful.
In 2011, Health Link Medical Center was accepted as a licensed Regenexx provider and I had the first Regenexx-SD stem cell procedure in my right hip at our clinic. I did quite well and was very enthusiastic about my outcomes. That being said, both my knee and hip were not strong enough for me to get back to the active life I had prior to my joint problems. I was out of pain however and could be reasonably functional (walking for a couple of miles or standing for up to one hour without pain). Gradually, in the fall of 2012, my hip became more and more of a problem and I found that I was sitting at every opportunity. This led to my lower extremity muscles becoming weak and somewhat atrophied. Then I began to awaken with increasing low back pain and had to find a wall to support me on my way to the bathroom. After stretching for a half hour and a hot shower, my back became tolerable and I could function. I had planned on getting more treatment from my team of specialists once we moved our clinic in Oceanside and got settled.
I have tried to write every two to four weeks regarding my journey so that I can give readers a blow-by-blow of what I am going through and my results. So here it is:
9/17/13 Procedures performed by Jason Miller, M.D.:
- PL-Disc, bilateral L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1 transforaminal
- Prolo-therapy surrounding ligamentous structures
- cSCVP/PL, Interarticular facets bilateral L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1
9/24/13 Procedures by Ronald Cohen, M.D.: (Pre and Post Injections were performed several days before and after the SD+ procedures.)
- SD+/AD, bilateral knees (medial compartment compression with extruding meniscus lateral
- SD+, right hip
10/01/13: With my birthday coming in 2 days, it is hard to comprehend that I will be 71 years old. After the work on my spine, I couldn’t believe the relief as it came within 24 hours. This is not typical as most patients do not feel a change for a week to a month after the procedure. I have not had any relapse since, and remain pain free even upon waking after a night’s sleep. (I also started sleeping on my back). The knees and hip are another story altogether. I decided to have Dr. Cohen start with Prolo-therapy to tighten the ligaments that had become lax. That was nearly painless. The actual stem cell procedure was as painful as I thought I could withstand, having three body parts done on the same day. THIS IS NOT RECOMMENDED! I was fortunate however because I had great care givers and was able to take 3 days off to recuperate. Since I rarely take any type of medicine, I was glad to have Norco and Tylenol available to me and took advantage of it. I also want to report that I was experiencing right foot pain that was in the ball of my foot on the medial side (below the big toe) and could not discover any type of pathology that was causing it. I had done a sensory nerve scan that was negative for the cause of the pain. What I discovered on Sunday that I was walking barefoot without any pain in my knees or hips or FOOT. I realized that I had been contracting the muscles in my foot to accommodate my altered gait as an adaptation for the pain in my right hip. (I have never had pain in my right knee, but decided to have the procedure anyway as examination showed instability and extruding meniscus.) I also was able to walk without the limp I have had for two years. The result of relaxing my foot and resuming a normal gait has been amazing. I started physical therapy for strengthening and improved range of motion and I go twice a week. I do the exercises that the therapist has recommended every morning and sometimes in the evening.
I am very excited to report that I am pain free most of the time and getting up from my bed in the morning is almost a pleasure. Well, to put it mildly…I am drinking the Cool Aid in total amazement. I will report back in a few weeks. I am hoping to go skiing this winter with my grandkids.