Imagine that for over 30 years you participated in a multitude of competitive sports, from track and field to amateur weight-lifting competitions. You kept to a daily, rigid exercise program at your gym with no intermissions, including lifting weights and running on the treadmill. Over time, however, you develop osteoarthritis, which takes a toll on your knees. Being an athlete, you are used to working through the pain until, at last, reality sets in. Not only are your knees refusing to lift weights or perform squats but even walking up and down stairs becomes almost impossible because of the excruciating pain. You sigh and think it’s time to visit a surgeon to heal your knees.
This was the situation KC Cole, the publisher of Potomac Lifestyle, faced a little over a year ago. The decision to submit to an operation on her knees was difficult for her, though, because she has long believed in curing her ailments naturally instead of relying on surgery or medicine. KC found an answer to her dilemma through becoming acquainted with ROSM (Regenerative Orthopedics and Sports Medicine) and Dr. John Ferrell, one of ROSM’s founders. After researching the top medical providers in the county to represent in the magazine she learned about regenerative medicine that offers options to surgery, cortisone injections, and physical therapy for joint pain.
According to KC, she met with Dr. Ferrell who explained to her the PRP treatment he would recommend for repairs to her knees. PRP, Platelet-Rich Plasma, involves drawing a patient’s blood and transferring it to a centrifuge tube and spinning it to concentrate the platelets. The platelets are then injected in the patient’s injury site to stimulate growth. Dr. Ferrell took his time explaining to KC the procedure and showed her videos to give her an understanding of what to expect. He also disclosed how his office uses sonograms right at the patient’s bedside to give doctors real-time feedback as to what the joint and soft tissues look like so there is no guesswork.
KC signed up for the PRP procedure on both her knees. Within 24 hours she was back on her feet and back to work. She reports that within three to six months she felt a definite difference in her knees and after nine months she feels 99 percent recovered, even returning to squats.
This writer also received a PRP treatment from Dr. Ferrell. In my case I tore my meniscus playing golf. After receiving PRP I opted for physical therapy – from Jason Glickman of Phoenix Physical Therapy – which helped immensely with my recuperation. And although complete healing doesn’t happen overnight, I realized how much I had recovered after a recent trip to Egypt that saw me constantly climbing uneven steps and walking on bumpy and rough pavements without any pain remaining in my knee.
Dr. Ferrell and his team of nine fellow doctors and four physician assistants have seen a great variety of patients enduring different ailments. What his practice offers is an alternative to medication, surgery, and physical therapy: “We fill in a treatment gap so patients who have long endured pain can delay knee, shoulder, and hip replacements and other instances of invasive surgeries.” When needed ROSM offers not only PRP but other minimally invasive therapies such as bone marrow and adipose-derived therapies.
Most patients the doctors at ROSM see suffer from joint and tendon pain including mild to moderate osteoarthritis. Sixty percent of people age sixty and older have arthritis that can affect their everyday activities. The office follows up the progress of those they have treated with a data registry, and seventy to seventy-five percent report less pain, better range of motion and better function after the treatments they provide. Their patients have ranged from a ten-year-old who suffered from “Little Leaguers elbow”, an injury to young players when repetitive throwing affects the ligaments and tendons of the elbow, to a ninety-seven-year-old with bad hip osteoarthritis who wasn’t a candidate for surgery because of her age. Both patients made significant recoveries – the young ball player even sent a photo of himself as a quarterback on his football team.
According to Dr. Ferrell, the treatments ROSM offers are evidence-based. Their doctors use research studies at the highest level. In addition, doctors in the practice hold monthly academic meetings to stay abreast of what is current and participate in curriculums with leaders in their field. Their practice of regenerative medicine is filling in a treatment gap by offering options to patients not benefiting from physical therapy, medications, and injections but not ready for invasive surgery.
To make an appointment at ROSM visit www.rosm.com or call 1 (443) 222-0714