How Do Bone Marrow Treatments Help Foot Fractures?

Ben Simmons is seeking bone marrow injections to speed healing of a fractured footJust when it seemed like the 76ers had put the worst of their foot woes in the past, president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo announced last week that Ben Simmons will miss the rest of the season because the Jones fracture (a break in the foot’s 5th metatarsal bone) in his right foot had not healed sufficiently.

This week the team revealed that Simmons had undergone a minor procedure to help his fracture heal: bone marrow was injected to the sight of the fracture with the hopes that it would stimulate new bone growth in the area.

Jones fractures are notoriously difficult to heal due to the limited blood flow in that area of the foot (it occurs at the base of the bone, beside the ankle, that extends along the outside of the foot and connects to the baby toe.) With the injection of a bone marrow concentrate rich in stem cells, doctors can stimulate new bone growth in a less-invasive form than a bone-graft surgery.

Though Simmons’ sidelining news was no doubt a blow to Philly fans, I think you can take solace in the fact that he’s been treated with a minimally invasive procedure (not to mention the fact that he’s expected to start practicing again within a matter of weeks.)

Like the doctors in Philadelphia, I always strive for minimally invasive, maximally effective treatments, especially for athletes eager to return to their sport. If you have concerns about a slow-to-heal sports injury and are hoping to avoid surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Schneider for a comprehensive consultation.