How do Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) stem cells and BioD Restore® (placental tissue graft) stem cells accelerate the healing process?

Imagine that a typical cut on your skin takes 14 days to heal almost completely. When platelet rich plasma (PRP) therapy is used, it can accelerate the same healing process to 10 days. When stem cell treatment is used (BMAC or BioD Restore®), the injury is completely healed in 7 days, cutting the healing time in half.

Are Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) stem cells and BioD Restore® all considered regenerative therapies?

No. While platelet rich plasma (PRP) accelerates the body’s ability to heal itself through the aid of growth factors, is not considered a regenerative therapy.

Bone marrow aspirate concentrate (BMAC) and BioD Restore®, on the other hand, are considered regenerative therapies because they assist with both healing acceleration and tissue regeneration. The additional “pluripotent” stem cells withdrawn from the patient and used for the BMAC procedure are “undifferentiated”, meaning they are able to replicate themselves into (or regenerate) various types of tissue. The same is true for BioD Restore® placental tissue graft “pluripotent” cells, but these are derived from the chorionic “Live Birth” placental tissue that was donated by pre-screened mothers.

BMAC stem cells are “autologous” tissue taken from a patient’s own Iliac pelvic bone.

BioD Restore® is a donor tissue from the chorionic side of the “live birth” placenta that has been donated by mothers who were prescreened and agreed to donate their placentas. This tissue does NOT need to be a “match” for the recipient because the chorionic placental tissue, and stem cells in general, are non-reactive to histocompatibility antigens, thus no graft-vs-host reactions occur.

Are all Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) and Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) stem cell therapies the same?

No. Patients considering PRP and BMAC therapies need to understand that the doctors who administer these treatments buy kits to concentrate and prepare the blood or bone marrow for the injections. There are many companies that sell these kits, but only a small number have received FDA approval for their kits. This means that some physicians are using kits that are not FDA approved or kits that provide significantly less concentrations of cells than the typically more costly approved kits.

Research shows that the minimum level for the concentration of platelets necessary to achieve positive results from PRP injections is 5-7 times that of the blood platelet count. Studies done in head to head comparisons have repeatedly shown that inexpensive and inferior kits used by some physicians only produce 2-3 times the blood platelet concentrate. It is very important that patients ask if the kits their physicians are using are FDA approved and if they are meeting the concentration levels necessary for a positive outcome.

The PRP kits that we use at OPTIMAL Pain & Regenerative Medicine® are FDA approved and produce at least 7-9 times concentrate of platelets. Our BMAC kits are one of only a very few approved by the FDA and consistently produce higher counts of nucleated stem cells than the competitors’ kits in head to head studies.

Is there an age limit for Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) regenerative therapy?

Patients up to age 60 can generally achieve tissue regeneration using their own “pluripotent” stem cells through BMAC therapy.

As the body ages, its ability to regenerate tissue from autologous (its own) stem cells diminishes as the number of stem cells produced by humans decreases with age starting at about age 40. After age 60, autologous BMAC typically fails to provide regeneration because there are not enough stem cells in the bone marrow. Between the ages of 70 and 80, there are almost no stem cells in the bone marrow to use. After age 80, stem cells in the bone marrow are virtually non-existent.

Due to this decline in autologous stem cells, patients over 60 years of age generally achieve better results using a combination of PRP for healing acceleration and allograft (someone else’s) tissues for regeneration. BioD Restore® is a cryopreserved allograft derived from human placental tissues. (These are obtained through voluntary donations of placentas after live childbirth.) Placental tissue stem cells are a rich source of growth factors that support tissue repair and regeneration. In this combination, BioD Restore® tissues are used as a wound covering in the treatment of localized tissue defects or areas of inflammation while PRP is used to expedite wound healing.

Why is Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC) called a stem cell therapy?

The term “stem cell therapy” is often associated with a controversial treatment using embryonic or fetal stem cells from aborted fetal tissue. By using a patient’s own “pluripotent” stem cells or placental tissues, the innovative therapies used at OPTIMAL Pain & Regenerative Medicine® can replicate the same benefits of stem cell therapy without the ethical concerns of using embryonic/fetal stem cells.