Stem Cell Therapy Relieves Back Pain

Happy campers ready to roll after regenerative medicine injections.

Online dating is not just for young adults. With more than a dozen sites or apps devoted to their age group, seniors are making friends, finding companions and discovering true love online as well.

Just look at Ed and Jennie Feder.

Don’t Operate-Regenerate!™

Don’t Operate-Regenerate!™

Ed, 81, and Jennie, 67, met online about four years ago. They went on their first date a week later, immediately discovered a variety of shared interests and were married on Dec. 30, 2020.

“The connection between us developed pretty quickly,” Ed shares. “By our third date, I think we both knew there was an attraction there. And there’s the fact that we both have very similar interests.

“We both like to cook, we both like kayaking and we both lean the same way politically. And we both like to travel. I have an RV, and Jennie took some classes so she can drive it. We have a three-month RV trip planned for later this year.”

Not long ago, the idea of spending three months traveling the country in an RV was inconceivable to Ed and Jennie. Back pain was the reason. Ed had been dealing with it for a decade, Jennie since she was injured in a 2018 car accident.

“My pain had always been pretty annoying, but a year ago, it went from annoying to unbearable,” Ed laments. “It happened pretty quickly, too. All of a sudden I could barely sit down or stand up without being in agony.

“It was so bad that not only did I completely give up my gym routine, but I couldn’t lift anything either. I couldn’t even get up from a seated position without feeling the pain. There’s no other way to describe it other than to say it was awful.”

Jennie’s pain was a little more tolerable, largely because she was receiving shots of prednisone, which can help ease arthritis. Still, if she sat for more than 20 or 30 minutes, the pain would intensify to intolerable levels.

“Anytime we drove anywhere it hurt really bad,” Jennie reveals. “Believe me, I tried everything I could think of to get rid of it. I tried physical therapy, an inversion table that Ed got me, even chiropractors. Nothing worked.”

After Ed’s pain intensified last year, he sought help from a neurosurgeon who could not find the cause. As a result, the neurosurgeon referred Ed to a pain management specialist, who not only found the cause but offered up some solutions.

“He told me the problem was with my sacroiliac joint and said I had three options,” Ed remembers. “I could get an injection of some kind of steroid-like medication, have fusion surgery or get regenerative medicine injections.”

Ed was intrigued by the latter. The pain management specialist did not perform such injections, but he made a referral to one that did: Erick A. Grana, MD, of Regenerative Orthopedic Institute in Tampa.

New-Age Specialty

Dr. Grana is a specialist in regenerative medicine, which promotes new growth in tissue ravaged by injury or arthritis using a nonsurgical, noninvasive technique called stem cell therapy. 

“Stem cell therapy treats disease and injuries by harnessing the body’s healing powers,” Dr. Grana educates. “The natural healing process occurs by combining patients’ stem cells and platelet rich plasma (PRP).

“Unlike traditional surgery, which can result in blood loss, scarring and long, painful recovery periods, stem cell therapy requires only injections into the damaged joint. This process results in a safe, effective treatment.”

Stem cells are the most basic building blocks of all tissues and organs, and they can be collected directly from the bone marrow or fat. There are no side effects or rejection.

The procedure used to collect tissue is similar to a blood draw. Once the tissue has been harvested, the stem cells and PRP are isolated and then injected into the painful area to spark the regeneration of damaged tissue.

Stem cell therapy can be used to treat damage in the knees, shoulders, ankles, wrists, hips, back and neck. It can also be used to treat arthritis and peripheral neuropathy almost anywhere in the body, as well as muscle and tendon tears.

At Regenerative Orthopedic Institute, Dr. Grana has developed a system for delivering stem cells and PRP into joints called RegenaJoint™. He has also developed a similar system to treat the spine called RegenaSpine™.

“RegenaJoint and RegenaSpine are convenient, minimally invasive procedures that are performed in my office using a local anesthetic,” Dr. Grana points out. “Patients typically resume normal activities immediately following the procedures.”

Amazing Results 

Dr. Grana used RegenaSpine to treat Ed’s back pain. Prior to delivering the injections, Dr. Grana explained that the regenerative process takes time, and cautioned that Ed may not feel the full impact of the treatment for a few months.

“I left Dr. Grana’s office that day thinking, Well, we’ll see how this goes,” Ed relates. “For the first few days, I didn’t feel anything. Nothing changed. After a week, though, I definitely felt better, about 30 to 40 percent better, I’d say.

“By the second week I was really feeling better. I was still getting some pain, but nowhere near what I had been experiencing, so when I went back for my follow-up visit with Dr. Grana, I suggested that Jennie talk to him about getting the treatment as well.”

Jennie followed Ed’s advice, and during her consultation with Dr. Grana, she agreed to receive RegenaSpine treatments as well. She received her injections the next day, and like Ed, she’s glad she did.

“It took a little bit longer for me to feel the effects than it did for Ed,” she says. “I would say it was probably about three months before I started to notice a difference, but then all of a sudden I had no more pain.

“Now I can sit in a car for long drives and go with Ed on trips and my back feels pretty darned good. We’re getting back to doing the things we love to do and are looking forward to the trips we’ve planned.”

In addition to feeling well enough to travel long distances, Ed has also resumed his regular workout routine. He doubts he’d be working out regularly and planning long trips in the RV were it not for Dr. Grana’s RegenaSpine treatments.

“I’m really pleased with the results,” Ed concludes. “Dr. Grana is great. He’s very thorough, and he’s surrounded himself with great people who complement his skills. Jennie and I gladly recommend them to anyone.”

© FHCN article by Roy Cummings. Photo by Jordan Pysz. js
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