As Americans learn more about regenerative medicine procedures like stem cell and PRP injections, they are also starting to ask their doctors about them. They want to know more about what they are, how they work, and whether or not they are appropriate for certain kinds of conditions. It is up to doctors know the answers.
At Apex Biologix in Salt Lake City, Utah, they see regenerative medicine as the future of medical treatments. Along with the Advanced Regenerative Medicine Institute, the professionals at Apex Biologix encourage doctors and clinics alike to look into offering PRP and stem cell therapies.
As a clinician, opening the doors of your practice to regenerative medicine will undoubtedly bring in new patients. Rest assured they will have tons of questions. Below is a collection of some of the questions patients most frequently ask.
Will this work?
Whether you are talking about PRP injections for hair loss or stem cell therapy to treat chronic arthritis pain, a patient will want to know if what you are recommending actually works. That is quite understandable. Patients do not want to undergo procedures that have no chance of producing the desired results.
As a clinician, you will have to rely on a combination of limited clinical evidence and the plethora of anecdotal evidence currently available. You will have to work with your patient to decide if the treatment offers enough promise to be worthwhile.
How does it work?
Curious patients also want to know how regenerative medicine works. Thankfully, it’s fairly easy to explain in terms most patients will understand. Regenerative medicine is based in the principle that the body knows how to heal itself given the right resources. The goal of PRP and stem cell therapies is to provide some of those resources and simultaneously signal the body to get busy healing.
Does it hurt?
The question of whether or not it hurts has been asked by patients for as long as doctors have been practicing medicine. And why not? Nobody likes the pain of being stuck with a needle or cut with a scalpel. The good news is that those regenerative medicine procedures currently allowed under FDA regulations are minimally invasive. They require only a tissue draw and an injection.
If patients can tolerate the needles involved in inoculations and blood draws, they should have no problem with PRP and stem cell therapies. Being stuck with needles is about as painful as it gets.
What are the risks?
Patients frequently want to know the risks of regenerative medicine procedures. The best way to answer such questions is to start by explaining that both PRP and stem cell injections already approved by the FDA are autologous procedures. That means patients provide the treatment material themselves. PRP patients provide their own blood while stem cell patients provide the adipose fat tissue from which stem cells are extracted.
Because the procedures are autologous, there is no risk of biological rejection. The risks of infection and other complications are minimal as well. PRP and stem cell injections are no more risky than routine blood draws.
How much does it cost?
The question that makes doctors most nervous is, “how much does it cost?” Unfortunately, insurance companies do not cover regenerative medicine at this time. That means your patients will be paying out-of-pocket. This could be a deal-breaker for some of them.
What you charge is entirely up to you. If you want to encourage as many patients as possible to try regenerative medicine, keep your prices reasonable and be willing to negotiate. There is nothing wrong with trying to make it affordable.