SPORTS MEDICINE / LAMENESS:
Advanced Regenerative Therapy for
Long Term Health and Athletic Soundness
The clinical uses for advanced regenerative therapies are varied and changing as the scientific community realizes the many new ways they can be utilized. Currently, regenerative therapies are popular for the treatment of tendon and ligament injuries, sudden traumatic joint injuries and more chronic arthritic joint problems. In tendons and ligaments, these therapies lay down the scoffolding for healing in a more natural and healthy way than we as veterinarians have ever been able to do before. Healing is more complete and occurs much more quickly.
Acute trauma to joints creates tremendous inflammation and if not treated aggressively can lead to devastating arthritis. IRAP and stem cells decrease inflammation without the use of drugs such as steroids and often improve joint health very quickly. There are many horses that do not seem to respond well to traditional joint injections (eg. corticosteroids used for hock arthritis), but have demonstrated much more favorable results with regenerative therapies such as IRAP.
Please call our sports medicine department to see if your horse is a candidate for these cutting edge therapies.
IRAP is produced from the incubation of the horse's own blood over specially coated beads in a syringe. The resultant serum fraction, containing potent anti-inflammatory agents, is then isolated and frozen for later use. IRAP has traditionally been used to reduce joint inflammation and reduce secondary joint arthritis. It also shows great promise in the treatment of tendon and ligament injuries due to its potent anti-inflammatory effects.
Stem cells are commonly derived from either fat or bone marrow. Once isolated they can be used to treat injuries to joints, ligaments, tendons and bone. Stem cells are considered pleuripotent cells, which are cells capable of becoming tendon, ligament, bone, cartilage, etc.
PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) is made by isolating the platelet-rich fraction of blood from the horse's own drawn blood sample. PRP has routinely been used in human plastic surgery to minimize scar tissue formation and it is commonly used in horses to improve tendon and ligament healing and is showing promise in treating joint injuries as well.
Stem cells and PRP will often be used together in an attempt to optimize tissue healing with PRP supplying growth factors that aid stem cell growth.
With the use of ultrasound guided injections, the doctor is able to make critical injections with delicate sensitivity.