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  • Northeast Wisconsin
  • November 2018
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Complementary care to support regenerative medicine treatments

When a person starts looking into regenerative therapies such as stem cell or platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) the question is often asked about what else they need to do. These types of regenerative joint injections can work wonderfully on repairing the body and can provide reduction in pain, but do need some help along the way. Here are some other types of therapies that may be ordered or suggested for you when getting regenerative medicine treatments.

1. Physical therapy or chiropractic care that focuses on joint movement and alignment

You need to move your body after these types of therapies as well as maintaining proper alignment. This will allow the new tissue to grow in the proper manner. When your body and joints are out of alignment it can cause muscle strain, improper wearing on bones and tissues, and subsequently pain. Some physical therapists also use a therapy called dry needling, which is similar to acupuncture. A dry needle (without medication) is inserted into the muscles with the goal of releasing trigger points (muscle knots) and improving range of motion.

2. Massage therapy focusing on fascia and soft tissue

Massage therapy reduces pain by allowing the muscles surrounding the joints to relax, which in turn releases stiffness. This allows for a better range of motion and mobility, thus promoting circulation for the new tissue to develop. Some of these treatments may be called structural integration, Rolfing®, or craniosacral therapy.

3. TENS unit

TENS stands for Transcutaneous Electronic Nerve Stimulator. This is a small portable machine that you can place on your body for three main benefits. The first benefit is it can reduce pain and inflammation. The second benefit is that it can reduce muscle spasms, which then will reduce the strain you feel on your joints. The last benefit is that it increases blood circulation which brings more oxygen, cytokines (your body’s naturally occurring anti-inflammatory agents), and growth factors to the tissue to promote healing.

4. Pool therapy and exercise

Pool therapy will allow your body to move without having the weight on your joints. It also can provide minimal resistance from the water. Walking in a pool or body of water can help your body get the movement and exercise it needs without the added pressure of your entire body weight. This is especially helpful for people with mobility issues or are just getting started with exercise.

5. Nutrition

Nutrition plays a major role in keeping your body healthy and pain free. Maintaining a healthy body max index (BMI) can reduce unnecessary pressure on your weight bearing joints. It is no secret that a plant-based diet rich in whole foods is beneficial for a multitude of health issues. Processed foods and refined grains, dairy and other foods may trigger joint inflammation. Additionally, there are specific nutrients found to promote regeneration in the body as well, such as making sure you get plenty of minerals and fat-soluble vitamins, as well as Omega 3 fatty acids. Working with a health coach or nutritionist to educate and motivate individuals to create a lifestyle change is beneficial to promote optimal results and enhance regenerative therapies.

As a care plan is very patient specific, there may be other therapies and/or products that may be added. These treatments are working together to help rebuild, repair and regrow tissue optimally. 

Diana Hardy, PA-C, MS

Diana Hardy, PA-C is the Physician’s Assistant at Northwoods Family Physical Medicine in Green Bay. Northwoods Family Physical Medicine has been using regenerative medicine in the Upper Midwest to help the community live a full, active life. To schedule your complimentary consultation, call the office at 920-301-3024 or visit

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