Stem Cell Treatment for Degenerative Disc Disease

Stem Cell Treatment for Degenerative Disc Disease

Degeneration of the intervertebral disc, often called "degenerative disc disease" (DDD) of the spine, is a condition that can be painful and can greatly affect the quality of one's life.


While disc degeneration is a normal part of aging and for most people is not a problem, for certain individuals a degenerated disc can cause severe constant chronic pain. Often, degenerative disc disease can be successfully treated without surgery. One or a combination of treatments such as physical therapy, chiropractic manipulative therapy (CMT) and other chiropractic treatments, osteopathic manipulation, anti-inflammatory medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, traction, or spinal injections often provide adequate relief of these troubling symptoms.

Degenerative discs typically show degenerative fibrocartilage and clusters of chondrocytes, suggestive of repair. Inflammation may or may not be present. Histologic examination of disc fragments resected for presumed DDD is routine to exclude malignancy.

Fibrocartilage replaces the gelatinous mucoid material of the nucleus pulposus as the disc changes with age. There may be splits in the annulus fibrosis, permitting herniation of elements of nucleus pulposus. There may also be shrinkage of the nucleus pulposus that produces prolapse of the annulus with secondary osteophyte formation at the margins of the adjacent vertebral body.

The pathologic findings in DDD include protrusion, spondylolysis, and/or subluxation of vertebrae (sponylolisthesis) and spinal stenosis.


Stem Cell Treatment and Degenerative Disc Disease NIH Streaming Database

Related Articles Design and fabrication of 3D-printed anatomically shaped lumbar cage for intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration treatment. Biofabrication. 2016 Jul 19;8(3):035001 Authors: Serra T, Capelli C, Toumpaniari R, Orriss IR, Leong JJ, Dalgarno K, Kalaskar DM Abstract Spinal fusion is the gold standard surgical procedure for degenerative spinal conditions when conservative therapies have been unsuccessful in rehabilitation of patients. Novel strategies are required to improve biocompatibility and osseointegration of traditionally used materials for lumbar cages. Furthermore, new design and technologies are needed to bridge the gap due to the shortage of optimal implant sizes to fill the intervertebral disc defect. Within this context, additive manufacturing technology presents an excellent opportunity to fabricate ergonomic shape medical implants. The goal of this study is to design and manufacture a 3D-printed lumbar cage for lumbar interbody fusion. Optimisations of the proposed implant design and its printing parameters were achieved via in silico analysis. The final construct was characterised via scanning electron microscopy, contact angle, x-ray micro computed tomography (μCT), atomic force microscopy, and compressive test. Preliminary in vitro cell culture tests such as morphological assessment and metabolic activities were performed to access biocompatibility of 3D-printed constructs. Results of in silico analysis provided a useful platform to test preliminary cage design and to find an optimal value of filling density for 3D printing process. Surface characterisation confirmed a uniform coating of nHAp with nanoscale topography. Mechanical evaluation showed mechanical properties of final cage design similar to that of trabecular bone. Preliminary cell culture results showed promising results in terms of cell growth and activity confirming biocompatibility of constructs. Thus for the first time, design optimisation based on computational and experimental analysis combined with the 3D-printing technique for intervertebral fusion cage has been reported in a single study. 3D-printing is a promising technique for medical applications and this study paves the way for future development of customised implants in spinal surgical applications. PMID: 27431399 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Quick Contact Form