Sioux Falls Man Received Treatment Using His Own Fat Stem Cells
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Doctors say a breakthrough in stem cell research from over a decade ago could someday replace traditional medicine. A procedure using a patient’s own fat stem cells has already helped many people across the world, but these types of procedures haven’t been approved in the U.S. That’s why one Sioux Falls man and some Sanford doctors traveled to Munich, Germany last year.
Imagine a more natural way of treating pain or even a more advanced treatment for cancer. What if I told you common ailments like chronic back pain or arthritis could be healed? That’s what doctors say treatments using a patient’s own stem cells could do. One of those doctors is German Doctor Eckhard Alt.
“The next generation of medicine would be to learn how we can heal ourselves, without artificial implants, without drugs, that we use the regenerative power of our own body,” said Dr. Alt.
This might sound like something out of a Sci-Fi movie, but Dr. Alt says this type of practice is already being brought to clinical practice.
“In nature, tells you there is a regenerative potential in all of us. If you look at the lizard, you cut off the tail, it even has the ability to re-grow,” said Dr. Alt
Doctors say many patients have chronic pain and have exhausted all of their options. That’s what happened to one Sioux Falls man, Bill Marlette. He lost one of his arms in an accident when he was a teenager, resulting in more stress on his other wrist. Marlette said the excessive stress on his wrist caused a lot of pain, even when doing everyday activities. When his doctor heard about Dr. Alt’s practices, he suggested the procedure using his own fat stem cells. Last year, Marlette traveled to Munich, Germany with some Sanford Doctors to repair his wrist.
“It’s made my life more active and pain free again,” said Sanford Health Treasurer, Bill Marlette.
Marlette said he hopes the national exposure from his story can help Sanford’s goal of bringing treatments like this to the region. He said the procedure has been life changing for him and could benefit many other patients.
“Without this I, I would be probably really scaling back in what I could do,” said Marlette.
Marlette said 2 weeks after the procedure pain had already started to go away. Now, 7 months later he said he’s pain free.