Do Stem Cells Help With Arthritis Pain?

Dr. Bruce explains the before and after X-rays of a patient who came to Bridge Integrative Medicine with Arthritic Knee Pain and had been told they were “bone on bone”.

“Transcribed from an interview on 5.5.20”

Jeremiah: Dr. Bruce, thanks for joining us today. We’re going to look at some x-rays. I have no idea how to read an extra and I get lots of questions about x-rays in the phone calls. People talk about being bone on bone, talk about arthritis, all sorts of things and I know we have to look at x-rays for them. Let me pull up one of the X rays real quick for you. So kind of talk me through before and after on these. 

Dr. Bruce: Yeah. So, there are a lot of things that you’re looking for on an x-ray. That’s not, it’s not a very normal x-ray. The one on the left, there’s obviously the before, you can see how the patella, the knee bone is actually pressing against the femur there. So yeah, there’s not a lot of spacing in there. That’s going to grind, you know, it’s going to be really grindy.

Jeremiah: Is that where people talk about feeling like sandpaper? Is that what that is?

Dr. Bruce: A lot of times. And you know what this comes from sometimes, it’s exercises maybe a very aggressive exerciser, you know, the running athlete or the bicyclist, but in all honesty, it’s more rare in your marathoner than it is in the person that has sat up and sat down for their whole career doing things with their mind. So the smart people don’t usually get the best benefits out of holding still for their entire career. Yeah, that’s what it is. But you can see the traction spur at the top of that. And I don’t know if there’s a way for you to highlight that you know your computer better than I do, but you can see there’s a traction spur.

Jeremiah: Yeah, right at the top of that right there. 

Dr. Bruce: That’s not supposed to look like that. There should be no hook on the, on the North West corner there on that thing. So, and by the way, it looks also that there’s a hook coming up from the femur itself to meet that. So you’ve got, a real problem there that’s going to be very grindy trying to bend all the way down. It’s gonna be very difficult. And of course, yeah, there’s the spacing that’s gone there and the and the meniscus that you just highlighted. That’s a problem. If you don’t, you know, just a tiny bit of space gives you so much more movement and depth and a value to that, that knee.

Jeremiah: Is it one centimeter equals 10 degrees emotion in the knee?

Dr. Bruce: Oh no. One centimeter would be almost full range. Yeah.

Dr. Bruce: One millimeter, which is one 10th of that, about the thickness of a dime in that area would allow you to bend that knee way, way better if you just could put a little more cushion in. And, yeah, and I remember this one so that we did, we did stem cell injections with this one. I remember that we did that. You got the before and after.

Dr. Bruce: There you can see that there’s obviously a difference in space. You can actually see a rounding to the bone or you can there’s a big space right there. Well that doesn’t grind anymore. I mean that’s what, that was one of the things that she, you know, she could walk, she could walk upstairs fine, but couldn’t walk downstairs. She could not walk downstairs. If she tried to walk downstairs, she had to go sideways. That’s what it was, there’s a big difference between walking upstairs and downstairs.

Jeremiah: Really?

Dr. Bruce: Yeah, and then of course you’re looking at the meniscus there that you circled there on there on the right hand side. Look how much more of a rounded edge. The bottom of that bone is the femur as it comes down and then connects with the lower bones, you get a much more rounded edge. And that’s because you’ve got the next video or the next picture, right? 

Dr. Bruce: When you took this one, look at the difference here. Let’s see if we can remove all those. I’m sure you will, but, but if you look at this, this is the same leg. Okay? So if you look at how thin that is on the left hand side there, right? That is very little. You will hear people say bone on bone. By the way, she was told three different times from three different orthopedists that she was bone on bone.

Dr. Bruce: But we both can see there’s a little, a little bit of space. There’s a little tiny space over there. So she’s not really bone on bone. Bone on bone is just a lay person’s way of saying something. Yeah. Right. And then if you look at the one on, somehow he jumped backwards. But if you look at the one, the one on the right though you can see that after we did stem cells and rehab, she has actually grown, several, actually two millimeters. That’s that whole spacing was right, It is much better. 

Dr. Bruce: And, and to be honest with you, it showed up in her activities of daily living. She can walk downstairs with no pain now. And one of the things that she mentioned was that, her grandkid went with her, she went to a store and she actually stooped down to get some kind of cereal off the bottom, right up the bottom of a shelf. And she said there was no way I could have bent my knees and basically put my bottom on my heels to get the the lower price cereal or whatever it was that her grandkid wanted from the bottom shelf. So, yeah, I mean, these are real things. These are, these are real things.

Dr. Bruce: But I want to point out too though, that that was just after three months and she has continued with the program. Now there are several people that we’ve had that have been pretty severe arthritis, like you see on the left there. And that had done several different sessions with us. So she just did one and went through the program very happy. It was only three months.

Jeremiah: It will grow for a while. 

Dr. Bruce: Yeah. It’ll continue to grow for awhile, that cushion will yeah. So we’re, we’re really happy with what happened there,  huge difference on how that knee is going to work.

Dr. Bruce: A lot of people talk about pain and I know you get it all the time. 

Jeremiah: Well, you know they tell me, “Hey, it’s my knee is killing me. It’s a lot of pain”, but the fact is it needs to work. 

Dr. Bruce: Yeah. You know, it needs to, it needs to be able to do something so you can go shopping with your grandkids or whatever it is that you like to do. So, yeah, that’s just kind of what it is. But traction spurs, that’s what those are called. Yeah.

Jeremiah: Well, thank-you Dr Bruce for walking us through those x-rays. 

Dr. Bruce: Yeah. Walking you through that. Was that on purpose? 

Jeremiah: Okay. Yeah. If you have questions about a second opinion on a bone on bone diagnosis, you can call the doc 816-454-5433.  

Dr. Bruce: Thanks. 

Jeremiah: Yeah, you’re welcome.

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Dr. Bruce Rippee, DC is a chiropractor in Gladstone, MO and has been practicing for 29 years. He graduated from Cleveland Chiropractic College of Kansas City in 1991 and specializes in chiropractic, chiropractic sports medicine, and more.


Monday – Friday 9am – 6pm
Closed Daily 1pm – 2pm
Saturday & Sunday Closed




305 NW Englewood Ct. #200,
Gladstone, MO 64118

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