Some people suffering from low-back pain could benefit from the type of bio-cellular grafts that surgeons use to repair tissue damage, new US research suggests.
The annual meeting of the American Academy of Pain Medicine heard that some sufferers given the novel therapy had reported complete pain relief although others had experienced no improvement in their symptoms.
The study’s primary author, Donald J Meyer, said the results had been “encouraging”.
He added: “Currently, when conservative treatment measures fail, therapeutic options are limited for individuals with back pain due to disc degeneration. Many resort to disc surgery or spinal fusion with mediocre results. Our goal is to help develop a safe, natural method to boost the body’s own capacity to heal discogenic pain.”
The research team reported that between five months and two years after having their lumbar discs injected with bone marrow cellular aspirate, patients had reported changes in their back pain ranging from complete relief to no improvement. No complications had occurred and nobody reported that their pain had got worse.
All those experiencing pain relief had also reported using less pain medication and/or a significant improvement in their tolerance to activity.