I am seriously considering the Regenexx stem cell procedure, as I have osteoarthritis in my right ankle. The pain is almost constant in varying degrees. Walking is becoming difficult as is standing if I am walking or standing for any length of time. I have seen a doctor who uses the Regenexx protocols, as fusion or ankle replacement procedures are last ditch choices, as both involve invasive surgeries and provide no guarantee of success. These surgeries are covered by insurance, and Regenexx is not, but neither of these procedures will allow me to continue to enjoy walking, hiking, golfing or similar exercises with any degree of satisfaction. I am 73 years old male and in relatively good health other than the osteoarthritis. My hesitation is that the Regenexx procedure sounds too good to be true, however, I have spoken with several patients who claim they have benefited significantly, although they are much younger (55 as opposed to 73). My primary care physician has some of the same concerns about sufficient evidence that the procedure actually works, although he agrees that the risks are less than those faced with fusion or ankle replacement. I also spoke with a physician at the Mayo Clinic Regenerative Medicine Department and he indicated the regenerative medical procedures are used with some success involving hearts and veins, but little has been done in his area with regenerating cartilege and ligament tears. He recommended waiting 2-3 years, but by then I will probably be too old to have the procedure be successful.
Does anyone know about use of Regenexx procedures for ankle cartilege??? I need to know soon, so I can make a decision. Use of cortisone or synvisc only masks the pain and actually causes ligament and cartilege degeneration. Thank you in advance for any information you may be able to provide.