The Spine & Back Blog

Woman describes neck pain to doctor using telemedicineThe use of telehealth seeks to increase access to health care by expanding means of communication between providers and patients. Interactive telecommunications equipment makes the process simple and precise. Due to the recent Covid-19 pandemic, Dr. Hunter and his staff may be able to see you through “telemedicine”.

Effective Monday, March 30, 2020, NSSC Spine Clinic will begin offering Virtual Telemedicine Visits via Skype or Face Time.

Please contact our office at 704-864-5550 if you are interested. NSSC Spine Clinic will be following normal office hours.

Dr. Hunter and his staff are committed to providing care to their patients, while taking necessary precautions to mitigate the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

We will continue to take measures recommended by the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) to maintain a safe environment for our patients.

Please immediately reschedule your appointment at our office, if you have:

  • Recently traveled out of the country

  • Have been in close contact with someone experiencing a fever, cough, chills, or shortness of breath

  • You have recently experienced a fever, cough, chills, or shortness of breath

Should the need arise, please contact our office and we will work with you to reschedule your upcoming appointment.

Seek Medical Advice if you:

  • Develop Symptoms

  • Have been in close contact with a person known to have coronavirus

  • If you live in or have recently been in an area with an ongoing spread of coronavirus

Resources: 


Stem cell therapy, an innovative, non-surgical treatment for both joint and back pain, has become a viable alternative for pain relief without invasive surgery. Utilizing your own body’s stem cells, your body can in fact heal itself.

What are adult stem cells

Adult stem cells harvested from your own bone marrow have the ability to develop into other types of cells. These special types of cells are able to multiply, regenerate and self-renew. This means they have the ability to form potentially any type of tissue in your body. Because of their ability to differentiate and form different types of cells, they can be used to treat many types of injuries and regenerate damaged tissue. 

In fact, stem cells have many capabilities.  They are known to create proteins that decrease inflammation and kill bacteria, they can save dying cells, as well as, differentiate into cartilage, bone and connective tissue.

How Does Stem Cell Therapy Work

After harvesting your bone marrow from your hip, it is placed into a special filter and spun down in a centrifuge. This separates the adult stem cells from the red blood cells and plasma. Once the bone marrow has been separated, the adult stem cells, along with other growth factors in the blood, are aspirated into a syringe. The concentrated stems cells can then be injected into the targeted area.

Who Is A Good Candidate?

A good candidate for stem cell therapy is someone suffering from joint or back pain looking to improve the quality of their life, someone that wants to avoid the potential complications of surgery or a person looking to use their body’s stem cells as a method to restore their body using it’s own regenerative capabilities.

Treatment

Adult stem cells are being used to treat many types of chronic pain, arthritis, and degenerative disease of joints and the spine. Soft tissue injuries such as muscle, tendon and ligaments are also being treated with stem cell therapy,

Request a consultation

Call today if you think you might be a candidate for stem cell therapy to book an appointment for a consultation. Stem cell therapy could give you the relief you are looking for!

TREATMENT: PLATELET RICH PLASMA

What are Platelet rich plasma injections?

Platelet Rich PlasmaThis is a therapy based on your own cells. When you have a cut, the scab that forms is filled with platelets.  These are special cells in your blood that cause the blood to clot.  This clot helps heal an injury by releasing special growth factors. In addition, the platelets can also help reduce some harmful chemicals released by a trauma. Your joint or injured tissue can benefit from the release of these growth factors in a concentrated form.

Who is a good candidate?

Your physician will want a history of your injury and a physical examination along with any x-rays, and an MRI. While stem cell therapy may be appropriate for certain conditions, it is not applicable for every condition.  However, it has proven to be a viable option for  individuals suffering from pain.  A good candidate for adult stem cell treatment usually is:

  • Patients looking for mid-term pain relief of 3 months to 2 years.
  • Patients searching for improved pain relief and improved function above and beyond what is found in hyaluronic acid injections.
  • No or limited instability symptoms of the joint
  • Not currently taking blood thinners.
  • Ability to stop anti-inflammatory medications for 2 weeks prior and 2 weeks after the procedure.
  • Willing to participate in additional therapies to improve the health of the joint.
  • Age under 80

What is the procedure like?

A small amount of your own blood (anywhere from 10 to 40cc) is drawn, as would be done in a typical lab test, and then centrifuged (spun at a very high speed) to separate out your blood cells from your plasma and platelets. A concentration of anywhere from 3 to 9 times your normal amount of platelets is than formed into a solution called platelet rich plasma. This is packed with growth factors which help heal damaged tissue. This is all done in our office setting within 20 to 30 minutes. There are different protocols for these injections; depending on the specifics of your problem, your surgeon may recommend 1-5 treatments.  You may notice some improvement within weeks, but some patients do not see the full benefit of the treatments until 3 months after the last injection in the series.