I have suffered for years with osteoarthritis but it finally defeated me last spring. I was informed that I needed a new hip. In view of the long wait for surgery where I live (Canada) I began looking into alternatives that might at least give me some relief while waiting. Anti-inflammatory drugs made me feel quite ill and I did not like the increased speed of degeneration associated with cortisone injections. I contacted several doctors in the USA and Panama who offered 'miraculous' stem cell therapies but did not like either the cost or the extravagant claims each made. Finally, I discovered a pain management clinic in a small town in Alberta that offered stem cell therapy using stem cells harvested from one's own bone marrow. Though my own GP was reluctant to refer me, I eventually found a more open minded GP, and underwent the procedure just over three months ago. Within two weeks of receiving the injection, I was again able to walk without a cane, sleep without so much pain and put my own socks on without so much drama. While I was there, I took advantage of the harvested stem cell material to have my knee injected. The improvement there has been nearly 80% while my hip has improved about 40%. I do not think this is in any way miraculous nor do I think it a substitute for the hip surgery that I will eventually need but at least I can get by without pain medication and can do many of the things that will help me get fit enough for surgery. I still have trouble with weight bearing and must be careful with any chores that require lifting but I feel so much better overall that I feel confident in advising others to consider the benefits of a stem cell therapy as a pain management alternative while waiting for surgery. I believe that stem cell injections, if properly done, may also provide relief to those with multiple joint problems who are not candidates for joint replacement surgery.
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