Frequently Asked Questions
The following are the most commonly asked questions at Docere Medical. If, after reading, you have any additional questions that we did not cover here, please feel to contact us at any time!
DO THE STEM CELLS COME FROM MY BONE MARROW OR FROM MY FAT?
Bone marrow and fat are the two tissue types that are both rich in stem cells and easy for a skilled doctor to harvest. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and there does not exist strong data proving one to be superior to the other. At Docere Medical, we are injecting stem cells either into a patient’s vein, into the skin of the face/neck/hands, into the scalp, and in the case of the sexual optimization treatments, into the genitals. When we are injecting into a vein, we avoid using bone marrow in order to avoid inadvertently spreading a undetected cancer. In the case of the other injections, it is preferable to avoid injecting red blood cells (RBCs) into the target tissues, as RBCs cause tremendous bruising and post-procedure soreness. It is impossible to easily separate RBCs from bone marrow stem cells. However, if we suspend fat-derived stem cells in “pure PRP”, we are able to avoid injecting RBCs. For that reason, at Docere Medical, for the treatments described on these pages, we use fat-derived stem cells. At Docere Clinics, where we treat chronic musculoskeletal pain, the situation is different we generally combine fat-derived stem cells with bone marrow stem cells. Please visit Docere Clinics website for an explanation of stem cells for pain.
DOCERE CLINICS’ FEES ARE MUCH LOWER THAN MOST OTHER CLINICS. WHY IS THAT?
Because adult stem cell therapy for chronic pain is considered experimental, insurance does not pay for it; it is a ‘cash procedure’. Since Docere Clinics opened in 2002, we have been a ‘cash-based practice’ and have never billed insurance. The reason for this is that our philosophy is that we want to work for YOU, not for an insurance company. This means we have always offered and performed the treatments that we deem best and agree upon, rather than only what insurance companies deem they will pay for. Most other clinics that offer adult stem cell therapies for chronic pain transitioned to a ‘cash-based practice’ from ‘insurance-based practice’. Because these clinics were originally designed and structured based on a traditional high-volume, insurance-based model, they have large facilities and large support staff. Alternately, cosmetic surgeons with cash-based practices who offer stem cell therapies, often are accustomed to charging very high fees for complex surgeries. Some of our competitors additionally run very expensive marketing campaigns, whereas we grow almost entirely by ‘word-of-mouth’ referrals by satisfied patients. Subsequently, in the above cases, their cash prices are frequently very high in order to pay for their large overhead, while our low overhead allows us to charge far less without compromising quality.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS OF THE PROCEDURES?
There are very few risks involved. You are certain to be sore for a few days after the procedure, but that is a side effect, not a risk. Infection is within the realm of possibility but is almost unheard of in the Regenerative Medicine community. The biggest risk of these therapies is that you won’t be satisfied with the results, however, performed properly, they will not make your condition worse.
HOW MANY TREATMENTS WILL I WANT TO DO AND HOW OFTEN WILL I RECEIVE THEM?
We have found for the vast majority of conditions we encounter, we perform a single treatment and then follow up treatments every two to four years. The exception is in the case of chronic, degenerative disease, patients will likely return once or twice per year for follow-up. Factors include patient health/habits, adherence to post-treatment guidelines, and severity of the condition.
HOW WILL I FEEL IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE TREATMENT?
While the treatment itself is not terribly painful, after the procedure, you will have localized soreness and discomfort, especially after lipoaspiration. Most patients find over the counter medications and rest sufficient to help with the pain.
HOW SOON MIGHT I NOTICE IMPROVEMENT?
These therapies are intended to stimulate the growth and repair connective tissues. Unlike a filler injection, there is rarely immediate change. Typically, patients notice improvement after two to four weeks and continue to notice continual improvement months after the treatment.
ARE THE RESULTS PERMANENT?
Unless you are a vampire, nothing in this life is permanent. The treatments we offer are intended to reverse tissue damage and degenerative changes and turn back the hands of time, but they do not stop the hands of time. Our overall experience has been that after treatment, most patients return every two to four years for a ‘tune-up’ treatments.
DOES INSURANCE COVER THESE PROCEDURES?
WHAT GUARANTEE DO I HAVE THAT I WILL BE SATISFIED WITH THE RESULTS?
None. These therapies are considered experimental and therefore we cannot make any claims about efficacy. We are happy to report that our overall patient satisfaction rate is very high, but individual results vary and we do not help everyone.
WHERE DID DR. ADELSON LEARN TO HARVEST AND PREPARE STEM CELLS?
In February of 2010, Dr. Adelson visited the clinic of orthopedic surgeon and leader in the field of clinical stem cell medicine, Joseph Purita, M.D. in Boca Raton, Florida to learn regenerative cell therapy for musculoskeletal pain conditions. Upon return to Docere Clinics, Dr. Adelson began utilizing these therapies right away and has enjoyed years of successfully helping people with these elegant and safe modalities. Dr. Adelson has also visited the clinic of cosmetic surgeon and pioneer in adipose-derived regenerative cell medicine, Robert Alexander, MD to have his lipoaspiration technique critiqued and improved. Dr. Adelson and his staff were trained to isolate stem cells from whole adipose by Kristin Comella, Ph.D. and use the BioHeart AdipoCell system.