What is regenerative medicine? And how do we use it in our Houston podiatry practice to relieve you foot and heel pain without invasive procedures? Keep reading to find out more!

What is Regenerative Medicine? 

This is a medical field of technology that helps your body heal itself, providing non-invasive and minimally-invasive solutions to many causes of foot, heel and ankle pain. Put simply, regenerative medicine can boost healthy new tissue growth  to repair damage from injuries. It can also boost blood flow to speed up healing. And, in combination, these two effects make regenerative medicine a great treatment option for sports injuries, plantar fasciitis, arthritis pain and many more conditions. 

Regenerative Medicine Treatment Options

Here in our Houston podiatry practice, we offer several treatment options that rely on the power of regenerative medicine. Let's take a closer look at each one. 

Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy in Houston 

One form of regenerative medicine we offer is platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP. This is now a very popular treatment option for patients recovering from bone and muscle injuries. It's also helped so many of our patients get over chronic heel pain from plantar fasciitis. PRP is also a great option if you're dealing with Achilles tendinitis. Here's how it works. 

When you come into the office, we'll draw your blood. Next, we'll place your sample into a special machine that uses a centrifuge to separate your blood into different components. Once that separation is complete, we can take the isolated plasma, that's rich in platelets, and inject it into your targeted treatment area. (Remember, plasma is portion of your blood that carries blood cells, stem cells, and healing platelets. Platelets are the particles in your body tasked with responding to injuries. And, together, the substances in your plasma help new, healthy cells form in your body.)

What happens after you receive a PRP injection? Well, the power of regenerative medicine can start working! Basically, when we inject PRP into the area surrounding your injured bone, joint or tendon, the concentrated proteins and platelets speeds up your body's efforts to heal that injury. This allows you to enjoy a faster, more natural recovery. And that's really what regenerative medicine is all about. 

Dr. Schneider performing ShockWave Therapy for heel painShockWave Therapy in Houston 

ShockWave Therapy is another form of regenerative medicine we offer at our practice.  You can choose this non-surgical, non-invasive treatment for a variety of painful conditions. Now, there are several kinds of ShockWave treatments, but we use Extracorporeal Pulse Activation Technology (EPAT) in our practice. We love this low-intensity therapy because, as a form of regenerative medicine, it pushes your body to heal itself. But it works differently than PRP injections. 

Instead of using your own blood, ShockWave uses high-energy ultrasound waves. It also uses mechanical acoustic waves, directing both forms of energy directly to your injured tissue. When these waves get beneath your skin, they cause microtrauma in the target treatment area. While that trauma won't cause you more pain, it will remind your body there's a problem. And when your body gets that notification? It will redirect healing resources to the site of your injury. In turn, your body will respond by repairing tissue at the cellular level. It will also form new blood vessels at the injury site, through a process called angiogenesis. Your body will even get help breaking up calcium deposits and scar tissue that tends to form at the site of an injury. In combination, these effects will lead to faster healing. And quicker pain relief, without the need for surgery or other invasive procedures. 

Swift Therapy for Warts

Swift Therapy is another form of regenerative medicine that we offer in our Houston podiatry practice. This system treats plantar warts and verruca. But it does so very differently from traditional treatment options for warts. Instead of destroying the wart tissue, a slow and often painful process, Swift takes a different approach. Basically, it uncovers the virus that causes warts to form, spurring your immune system to resolve the growth. And, because Swift triggers the immune system to heal itself, it's a form of regenerative medicine. (And a really effective one too. When you treat warts with Swift, there is less than a 1% chance of a recurrence. So we can consider this treatment option a cure for plantar warts.) 

What is Regenerative Medicine Used for in Podiatry? 

To review, regenerative medicine refers to treatments that help your body speed up its own internal healing processes. To date, we offer three forms of regenerative medicine in our podiatry practice in Houston: platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections; ShockWave therapy, and Swift Therapy. Patients choosing these treatments can get rid of plantar warts and warts that occur on other parts of the body. And they can speed up post-surgical healing, and relieve plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. They can even dull the pain of a broken foot or a sprained ankle. The options are many, and the results are great. Because we're just helping your body heal itself, without injecting foreign substances. And without slicing you open for surgery! 

Now, one of the most exciting things about regenerative medicine is that this is a rapidly developing area in podiatry. Right now, our office offers three regenerative treatment options. And they can relieve many different foot and ankle conditions. But, since technology is advancing rapidly, we expect to see many more treatment options that harness the power of regenerative medicine. As such, we're staying on top of all the latest developments in this field. When new, effective solutions emerge, we will be proud to bring them to the office, so we can stay at the cutting edge of podiatric technology. And so we can relieve your chronic foot and ankle conditions in the least invasive ways possible. 

Are you ready to say goodbye to chronic foot or heel pain? Have you been bothered by lingering pain after an injury? Help is available, without invasive procedures! Just contact our office and schedule an appointment. We'll be happy to discuss forms of regenerative medicine that can relieve your pain and reduce your recovery time!