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The Count Matters: Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells

The Centeno-Schultz Clinic has been pioneering regenerative medicine and using bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells since 2005. We are committed to the highest level of medicine and patient care. As such, we feel it’s important to answer this question:

Does the Number of Stem Cells Harvested and Injected Matter?

Yes!  Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells can naturally transform into many tissues, including bone, cartilage, and fibrous tissue. In 2015 we published a dosing paper for knee osteoarthritis utilizing total nucleated cell count (TNCC) as a proxy for stem cell yield in patients undergoing bone marrow aspiration. In the study there was a relationship between decreased knee pain and a TNCC count of greater than 400 million injected cells. Others have reported similar findings. Pettine et al. demonstrated the higher the stem cell counts the more dramatic the pain reduction in patients who underwent intradiscal stem cell injections

Hernigou et al demonstrated similar findings when evaluating the success of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells in the treatment of nonunions and osteonecrosis. Success is dose dependent.

Makes sense! The more stem cells the better chance for success!

Is My Physician Counting My Stem Cells?

Unfortunately, most of the physicians utilizing bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells have no ability to count the number of cells that they are harvesting and injecting. Why? The majority of the physicians use a bedside centrifuge (such as the one shown below) that cannot provide this information.

In contrast the Centeno-Schultz Clinic has a state-of-the-art lab with cell-counting devices and a staff including a PhD.

At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic we count the number of cells from every bone marrow aspirate. This is critical, as success is dependent upon the number of cells. Failing to count the cells falls below our standard of care and is akin to driving blindfolded.

Don’t be like Terrell Owens who underwent a stem cell procedure without knowing the number of cells and most likely received treatment for too many areas, resulting in a suboptimal outcome.

If you are considering stem cell treatments, specifically ask your physician whether he or she will be able to tell you your TNCC, or stem cell number, as this is critical to your clinical success. If your physician does not have the ability to do this, consider contacting us for a new patient evaluation.