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Stem Cell Injection Experience

I am just going to keep my journey so far short because I am sure that many people would understand what the whole journey is like:

Disc herniation in 2015, severe sciatic pain, Chiropractors and Physical therapy didn't help, got epidurals, didn't help. Got L4-L5 discectomy done within 7 months of the injury. But the pain didn't go away.  Further MRIs show no more bulge but the surgeon says that the nerve probably got permanent damage and I just have to deal with the pain. I tried epidurals again, didn't help. Got an MRN done, and MRN also shows no damage to the nerve. No one has any clue why my sciatic nerve wont just calm down.

Finally decided to get stem cell injections. The doctor did some fat extraction and injected me with stem cells at around 10 spots. Felt good for about 5 days, but the pain is back again after those 5 days. Doctor has already mentioned that it takes about 2 to 3 months for the stem cells to completely do their thing. It has been 5 weeks so far, but don't see any difference yet. Just wanted to share my experience here. Will update again in a few weeks regarding the progress. If there is anyone in the same boat, please share your experiences as well.




  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 6,399

    hello orbit!
    please click on the welcome link below and the tutorial to get you started on the forum.
    welcome to spine health

    we have had a few past members that talked about stem cell but no one has actually posted their experience with it. thank you for doing this. when you update, please do it here, not a new discussion. that way new members will get the whole story.
    after 2-3 months and there is no progress, will your doctor do it again?
    good luck and i hope you see some progress soon.
    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator
    Please read my  Medical History
  • ArizonaAArizona ArizonaPosts: 202

    Does insurance cover this?

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  • Insurance doesn't cover that. But you can use HSA funds for the payments

  • Wanted to provide an update here. It has been more than 3 months now that I got the stem cell & PRP injections. Didn't see much of a difference for the first 8 weeks. Doctor just keeps saying that I need to give it more time and wait at least for 6 months to feel the full effect. When the pain intensified, he suggested that I get Prolo therapy injections, which he said would speed up the healing process. The first Prolo therapy injections were very helpful and the relief lasted about 2 weeks before the pain came back gain. I got another round of the same Prolo therapy, and it feels a bit better now. I am not sure how long this is going to last.

  • My son received stem cell injections this morning to address chronic lower back pain.  I just thought I would add to this thread and plan to provide information regarding his experience. There are several different schools of thought and procedures for stem cell therapy.  There seem to be pros and cons for each type of procedure. In his case, the stem cells used were umbilical cord. They were injected without steroids or anesthesia. From what I understand, progress (if any) will be gradual as the stem cells activate the healing properties in his body. I will keep you guys posted on how he does. 

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  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 6,399


    I am so sorry to hear about your son. But hopefully this will work out. Once in a while we have members ask about stem cell. We have older discussions but no one gives us updates.
    So thank you. We would like to hear how your son is doing.

    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator
    Please read my  Medical History
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,528

    From what I understand, stem cell injections is something relatively new for spinal specialists to recommend.  Its less invasive then any surgery, but the two negatives are they are not covered by insurance and their are no guarantees on the success.

    If any of you followed the discussions I have recently had about my daughter and her spinal issues, one of the specialist did recommend stem cell injections.  He said besides the cost, it was less than a 50-50 chance of this helping.   At about $3,500 an injections, this was not the route my daughter decided to take.

    Personally, I dont think there is enough data and evidence to support stem cell injections for spinal disc problems.   I know for knees, the verdict is still out.  Seems to follow the same path as spinal epidurals.   It works for some, but not for others.... And it costs a good amount of money that is not covered by insurance

    Id like to see more data on this before it could be considered a valid option

    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • rehabsmartrrehabsmart Posts: 11
    edited 05/17/2019 - 10:59 AM

    @dilauro yes a lot of people with spinal issues are interested in PRP and stem cells. Here is a link to a search I did on the U.S. National Library of Medicine. 

    For anyone interested, these are all cited articles and have some very promising and intriguing information. There are some articles with stem cell trials and there results which are also very promising. 

    Edited by Sandra for external link

  • Just an update. This is really early in the process as my son only received stem cell injections 4 days ago. So no real signs of relief yet, but I thought folks might be interested in his experience so far. The procedure was quick. Total time in the doctor’s office was about 30 minutes. He’s young (25) and apparently has very dense muscle structure which makes injections more difficult and tends to cause more than typical discomfort following injection type procedures. His discomfort has been noticeable but not as severe as with past steroid injections and has gradually reduced over these few days. So far so good. 

  • Great info. Thanks rehabsmart! 

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