Q A doctor informed me of an alternative treatment for the ailment, Osteoarthritis recently. It is known as “Surve Cell”. According to this method the doctor draws some blood from the patient’s knees, culture them and after a few days re-inject the same blood back to the knees. According to the information from my general physician, there had been favourable results from this procedure.
What is your opinion about this method? If I try this, will there be any relief for me?
Michael Pieris - A suffering patient
A: There are two types of blood product related injections that are being practiced in the world for knee and muscle related problems.
Out of this I assume that you were referring to platelet rich plasma injections. This is what is practiced in Sri Lanka. There is another variety of injections which uses stem cells. This is currently not available in Sri Lanka as it is a very advanced type of an injection with colossal expenses for the patient.
Platelet rich plasma injections are done using the patient’s own blood. Blood is drawn out from the patient and particles called platelets are separated from other components. Then these platelets are injected in to the joints or painful muscles. The usefulness of these injections were analysed by a premier research group called Cochrane. What they did was, they checked the response of nearly 1088 patients who were given these injections. What they found out was that there was not much of a difference in pain symptoms even after the injections were given. Therefore still platelet rich plasma is not an approved way of curing joint pain. At National Health Services-United Kingdom where I worked a couple of years ago, these injections were never practiced by rheumatologists/joint specialists.
I hope this information was useful for you.