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Orthopedic stem cell treatments are everywhere and offered by a number of different types of doctors which include chiropractors, family practitioners, rheumatologists, and orthopedic surgeons. The websites found in an online search for “stem cell therapy Denver” are rich in color, claims, and testimonials.  Their appeal is easy to understand — what’s communicated is that your debilitating knee or shoulder pain can be transformed by a simple stem cell injection.  Is it that simple, and what do you need to know to choose the best stem cell therapy in Denver?

What Are the Important Factors in Choosing the Best “Stem Cell Therapy Denver”?

Important factors to consider are physician training and certification, clinic longevity, publications, what is being injected and how the procedure is being performed.


It may seem like a simple issue, but who is performing your procedure is critical. To treat orthopedic conditions one must have extensive training in the musculoskeletal system such as a residency or fellowship in physical medicine, sports medicine or orthopedics.  Medical schools and residency programs offer limited training in Interventional orthobiologics, therefore, additional training is required for mastery.  This can not be obtained by weekend for-profit training programs.

The Interventional Orthopedic Foundation is a nonprofit that offers a series of orthobiologics workshops that focus exclusively on musculoskeletal anatomy, PRP and stem cells.  At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, all physicians are board-certified with fellowship training.  Each physician must participate in ongoing training and teach at the IOF workshops.  The Centeno-Schultz Clinic is the only clinic that offers a fellowship program in orthobiologics where physicians who had completed medical school and residency dedicate an additional year of training in stem cell and PRP treatments.  If you are considering stem cell or PRP injections make sure that a board-certified physician with additional training in interventional orthobiologics will be providing your evaluation, treatment and follow up.

For a better understanding of the Centeno-Schultz Clinic Fellowship program watch the video below.

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What is Interventional Orthobiologics?

Interventional orthobiologics is a whole new way of looking at and treating orthopedic injuries without surgery.  It uses a biomechanical and nervous system approach to the whole body.  Orthobiologis are substances that when injected prompt healing of orthopedic tissues and include platelet-rich plasma, stem cells, and extra-cellular matrices.

To learn more about Interventional Orthopedics please click on the video below.

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Clinic Longevity

Clinic longevity is critical as it attests to how long a given clinic has been successfully treating patients. Orthobiologics is a new field in medicine which is not being taught in medical schools or residency programs.  The Centeno-Schultz Clinic is where orthopedic stem cell injections were invented.  We were the first clinic in the world to inject stem cells into a lumbar disc in 2005 (3).  We have 15 years of experience, have treated thousands of patients, tracked their outcome, trained fellows, conducted research and published our results (4).  We are the world’s leaders in stem cell and platelet therapy.  Questions to ask if you are considering treatment include:  How long has the clinic be open and what are your clinical outcomes?  Don’t settle for “all of our patients have great success”.  Specifically ask how much improvement in function and reduction in pain do patients experience at 3 months, 6 months and one year? Beware of famous athletics who endorse a clinic or procedure as these are paid for endorsements.

To understand how Centeno-Schultz Clinic is different from other clinics please click on the video below.

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Published Literature

To be leaders in the field of orthopedic stem cells, research is mandatory.  By digging deep and asking problematic questions, advances are made and clinical outcomes improve. Regenexx/Centeno Schultz Clinic has the most researched stem cell procedure for orthopedic conditions in the United States.  Published research from our clinic now accounts for approximately 45% of the world’s orthopedic stem cell literature. Click on the hyperlink below to see our publications.

State of the Art Cell Laboratory

What is being injected is critical as it will determine the outcome. Most stem cell clinics use a bedside centrifuge to isolate and concentrate the stem cells.  A bedside centrifuge is a one size fits all machine with a simple start and stop button.  It spins down whole blood or bone marrow aspirate into a small volume that can then be reinjected into the patient.  At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, which is the Clinical and Research Headquarters of Regenexx, we use a university type cell lab that allows us to concentrate 5-20 times more stem cells per unit volume than can be achieved by bedside centrifuge machines.  Why is this important?  Many of the areas injected are small and will not take much volume which is the case with lumbar and cervical discs  Hence it is critical to have the highest number of cells in the smallest volume.  Studies have demonstrated the higher the number of stem cells used the better the clinical outcome (5)

To better understand how the Regenexx/Centeno-Schultz Clinic stem cell processing is different please click on the video below.

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Image Guidance

How the injection of stem cells or PRP is performed is critical. Specifically, how do the stem cells or PRP get to the damaged tissue? Four options exist: no guidance, ultrasound guidance,  x-ray guidance or both x-ray and ultrasound guidance.

No guidance: A blind injection is the most commonly used in clinics in general, whereby a needle is simply stuck through the skin toward the affected joint, much like a flu shot.  There is no assurance that the needle is in the targeted tissue.  This is important since the stem cells or PRP are intended to heal a specific area.  A knee meniscus tear or biceps tear in the shoulder, for example, requires that the needle and the injected cells be specifically in those tissues.

Ultrasound Guidance: Ultrasound guidance involves using an ultrasound to advance the needle and inject the cells or PRP under constant visualization into the targeted tissue.

X-ray Guidance: X-ray guidance, also called Fluoroscopy, does the same with an x-ray.  Some orthopedic tissues such as the ACL, and spinal structures are best seen under x-ray.

X-ray and Ultrasound: Utilizing x-ray and ultrasound is the highest standard. At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, all injections and bone marrow aspirations use advanced imaging and guidance which include ultrasound and x-ray. Using guidance during a bone marrow aspiration ensures the highest number of stem cells (2).

Questions to ask a clinic if you are considering treatment include:  What imaging is used in the placement of the stem cells or PRP? Is the doctor qualified to perform spinal procedures using x-ray?  If you get a blank stare or “no” know that there are much better stem cell therapy Denver options.

Does Stem Cell Therapy Cause Cancer?

Patient safety is mandatory.  At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, patient safety is always first and foremost.  As we invented orthopedic stem cell injections we have always been careful to ensure patient safety.  We thoroughly reviewed the medical literature in detail.  All procedures were critically reviewed by an Internal Review Board prior to implementation.  A patient registry was developed and implemented that tracked patient outcomes and any adverse side effects. To address the question of whether stem cell injections cause cancer we critically reviewed 2372 cases over  2.2 years and demonstrated that stem cell therapy is safe and does not cause cancer (6).

In Conclusion

Stem cell therapy Denver is rich in options.  Patients are best served by asking about physician training, clinic longevity, publications, and what is being injected and how the procedure is being performed. The Centeno-Schultz Clinic invented orthopedic stem cell injections 15 years ago, has board certified, fellowship trained physicians who use a state of the art lab to inject customized PRP and stem cell treatments under guidance into injured orthopedic areas.



2. Friedlis MF, Centeno CJ. Performing a Better Bone Marrow Aspiration. Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2016;27(4):919-39.DOI: 10.1016/j.pmr.2016.06.009

3.Elabd C, Centeno CJ, Schultz JR, Lutz G, Ichim T, Silva FJ. Intra-discal injection of autologous, hypoxic cultured bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells in five patients with chronic lower back pain: a long-term safety and feasibility study. J Transl Med. 2016;14:253.DOI: 10.1186/s12967-016-1015-5.

4.Centeno C, Sheinkop M, Dodson E, et al. A specific protocol of autologous bone marrow concentrate and platelet products versus exercise therapy for symptomatic knee osteoarthritis: a randomized controlled trial with 2 year follow-up. J Transl Med. 2018;16(1):355. doi: 10.1186/s12967-018-1736-8

5. Hernigou P, Trousselier M, Roubineau F, et al. Stem Cell Therapy for the Treatment of Hip Osteonecrosis: A 30-Year Review of Progress. Clin Orthop Surg. 2016;8(1):1-8. doi: 10.4055/cios.2016.8.1.1

6. Centeno CJ, Al-Sayegh H, Freeman MD, Smith J, Murrell WD, Bubnov R. A multi-center analysis of adverse events among two thousand, three hundred and seventy two adult patients undergoing adult autologous stem cell therapy for orthopaedic conditions. Int Orthop. 2016;40(8):1755-65.DOI: 10.1007/s00264-016-3162-y


The Centeno-Schultz Clinic is where Regenexx was created.  At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, we only use Regenexx technology and perform only Regenxx procedures.  The Centeno Schultz Clinic is the headquarters and training center for Regnexx.