When you’re experiencing chronic pain or an illness that affects every facet of your life — from how you sleep to how long you can be away from your home — it can make everyday life exhausting, so you’re willing to try anything to find a reprieve. Even having a slightly better day can make the quest towards wellness, more worth the battle.
At Optimal Health Medical Fitness, we serve those in Naperville fighting daily battles, whether it’s weight loss or chronic inflammation. Our approach implements healing modalities such as functional medicine, chiropractic, and acupuncture so you can find healing and balance in your health and wellness. Follow along in today’s post as we examine regenerative medicine and how it can offer the best in injury recovery options.
What is Regenerative Medicine?
As we age, our tissues and organs age with us causing damage, disease, and defects, this is where regenerative medicine begins, though it’s still in its infancy. Regenerative medicine is the medical area of study that creates new, functional tissues to replace those that need to be repaired or replaced and melds the best of chemistry, biology, genetics, engineering, and robotics to bring solutions and innovation to the most challenging medical issues we face. This approach to medicine assists your body by guiding it along in the healing process or providing the ability to take over the function of a damaged organ.
When our bodies suffer invasions from a virus or bacteria or experience physical damage, they beautifully produce compounds, in attempts to heal itself, and regenerative medicine is taking what our bodies already are making and using it to accelerate healing from tissue damage and trauma.
The Three Aspects of Regenerative Medicine
Regenerative medicine is working with what the body is already instinctively doing — protecting and healing — and engineering solutions so people can recover more quickly and efficiently.
- Cellular therapy – This type of regenerative medicine is one most people are familiar with, as it focuses on stem cell therapy. The stem cells are harvested from the patient and then injected into sites that are damaged and need repair. The stem cells can be from fat, blood, marrow, dental pulp, and skeletal muscle to insight healing.
- Tissue structuring and biomaterials – Tissue structuring (tissue engineering) is a type of regenerative medicine that implant biologically-compatible scaffolding into parts of the body where new tissue needs to be formed.
- Artificial organs – Organ failure is often remedied with a replacement organ from a donor, but you face a host of potential complications and side effects. While creating artificial organs is still mostly in the research stage, scientists are replicating organ systems such as the lungs, heart, liver, and kidneys.
Regenerative Medicine At A Glance
Regenerative medicine is an emerging field and is changing and saving lives on a daily basis.
- Organ transplantation began with the first kidney transplant in 1954.
- Organ transplants continue to evolve in the field of medicine as the 1980s usher in heart, lung, living-donor liver, and living-donor lung transplants.
- Because of the aging Baby Boomer generation, transplant medicine is facing a dilemma with the demand of organs compared to the organs that are actually available.
- Over 500,000 people get an organ transplant every year, but more than 100,000 people are on a waiting list and many will die before a donor is found.
- Tissue has been engineered for skin and bladder replacement.
- Stem cells and other cell types are available from many sources such as adult tissue and embryo tissue.
- Organs and tissues are readily available to meet the demands of transplant patients.
- The cure from diabetes could found through pancreatic cells being grown and implanted to those suffering.
- Organ printing is used and can facilitate “made-to-order” organs to be implanted.
Regenerative Medicine at Optimal Health and Medical Fitness
While we don’t do organ transplants or create new tissue, we do implement cellular therapy. We use platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy to help treat tissue tears and to speed recovery at an injured site. PRP therapy uses your own plasma as it drawn from your blood, separated, and injected into a myriad of tissues including the knees, shoulders, upper and lower back, and Achilles tendon.
Regenerative medicine is the new frontier in medicine that has the ability to change lives and eradicate diseases through cellular therapy, tissue structuring, and artificial organs. We’ve come so far from the 1950s and the first transplants and there is room for som much more growth and expansion.