Stem cell work could help to stop arthritis in its tracks

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Sunday 1 Sep 2013 3:00 PM

Written byADAM LUKE

A Cambridgeshire clinic has received approval to use adult stem cells to help repair and regenerate damaged tissues and joints.

The Villar Bajwa Practice at the Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital in New Road, Impington, is the first private hospital in the UK to offer the treatment for the hip tackling the early stages of arthritis.

It is also one of only a handful of sites to do the same for the knee, in which stem cells are used to create more cartilage, helping to preserve the natural hip and knee joints and delay or prevent the need for bigger operations such as joint replacements.

The operation costs about 3,800 on the NHS and slightly more privately.

Consultant orthopaedic surgeon, Richard Villar, runs the Impington practice with Ali Bajwa.

He said: One of the Holy Grails of my speciality is to encourage gristle articular cartilage to heal.

Gristle is that shiny, white layer on the end of a bone that most will have seen on a chicken drumstick. In humans, it coats the ball of the hip, and the hip socket but it features in many other joints, too knees, shoulders, elbows, wrists, ankles, toes and even fingers.

Originally posted here:
Stem cell work could help to stop arthritis in its tracks

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