Continued frustration and disappointment over the persistent failure of many surgical procedure to improve the pain and level of function of our patients led to the quest for an alternative.
Sakai was our first inspiration. He recognized that disc degeneration was a relentlessly progressive phenomenon with no currently available effective treatment. Working with rabbits, Sakai transplanted mesenchymal stem cells into degenerative disc to determine if stem cells were capable of repairing degenerated discs. While mesenchymal stem cells are available from many sources, Sakai obtained cells from bone marrow. The Regenexx procedure also uses bone marrow derived stem cells.
At 24 weeks, utilizing MRI and another methods, Sakai demonstrated that transplantation of mesenchymal stem cellss effectively led to regeneration of degenerative discs.
And the quest began……..