Bone fractures (broken bones) are among the most common types of injuries. Nevertheless, immediate treatment is imperative for proper healing. Usually, the bone can regenerate if immobilized with a brace, cast or surgical intervention, which generally involves plates and screws to hold it in place.
This procedure is called ‘setting the bone.’ It allows the two separated sides to connect naturally; the body produces new bone tissue to fill in the gap and fuse the fragments back together into a single bone.
Bones That Do Not Heal
Bone repair is a complex process. If you do not get a fracture treated, or if the bone fragments do not receive an adequate supply of nutrients (calcium) and blood, it can result in a nonunion – when the bone does not heal. A nonunion can also occur because of other reasons, including medical complications and lifestyle choices.
Nonunion Fracture Symptoms
You’ll know you have a nonunion fracture because the pain, swelling and tenderness continually worsen until you get it fixed. You may even experience a fever or drainage from a wound.
About 5-10% of the millions of bone fractures sustained in the United States annually experience nonunion. In these cases, the bone regeneration process failed.
Before, invasive treatment options like revision surgery or bone grafting were the only choices. Today, those who experience a bone nonunion are fortunate to have the option of stem cell therapy. This non-invasive treatment has delivered exceptional results for many Regenerative Orthopaedics patients.
Dr. Steven Struhl offers stem cell therapy to replace bone fracture revision surgery. We can complete it with minimal discomfort in-office at Regenerative Orthopaedics in NYC.
Nonunion Fracture Risk Factors
A nonunion can occur in any bone, but is more common in fractures of the scaphoid (wrist), shin, talus (ankle), the fifth metatarsal (foot), femoral neck (hip joint) and shoulder because blood flow to these bones can be inadequate.
Other risk factors include:
- Osteomyelitis (bone infection)
- The fragments separate due to insufficient stabilization, or the space between them is too large for bony remodeling to bridge
- Periosteum, muscle or cartilage interposition
- The patient’s biology (This includes factors that influence immune response, body chemistry or metabolism, such as a medical condition or lifestyle habits. For example, the use of tobacco or nicotine in any form, taking medications like anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen, aspirin, prednisone), older age and those with diabetes or severe anemia.)
Stem Cell Therapy for Healing Nonunion Fractures
Stem cells can become bone tissue. Stem cell therapy involves the use of stem cells to heal damaged tissue. At Regenerative Orthopaedics, we harvest stem cells from your bone marrow and inject them into the bone fracture that is experiencing a nonunion complication.
Stem cell therapy is an effective nonsurgical treatment option to repair your fracture. The concentration of stem cells stimulates recovery. Contact Dr. Steven Struhl at Regenerative Orthopaedics if you are suffering from a nonunion fracture to schedule a consultation and see if stem cell therapy is right for you.