Researchers at Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) are recruiting patients with knee osteoarthritis to participate in a study testing a stem cell injection treatment.

Participants will receive a one-time injection—into the knee joint—of either a stem cell treatment; Monovisc, a hyaluronic acid treatment that lubricates the knee joint; or saline (placebo). Since this is a blinded study, they will not know what treatment they received.

The patients will have x-rays taken prior to and 12 months after the injection; will have lab work done and will complete questionnaires regarding their pain and activity level; and will be seen at 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months following the injection to see if they experienced any pain relief or improved function.

“Studies have demonstrated that stem cells are safe and can improve healing and reduce symptoms in a number of different applications, such as cardiac surgery and wound healing,” says Sabrina Strickland, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at HSS and thee study’s principal investigator, in a media release from Hospital for Special Surgery.

“If it is shown to be safe and effective, slowing down the progression of mild to moderate arthritis, we’ll be able to help a lot of patients,” she adds.

The release explains that the study is open to individuals over 18 with moderate knee arthritis who meet additional criteria. Those with severe bone-on-bone arthritis would not be candidates, nor would anyone who has had knee surgery within the past year. Participants must also agree to stop any anti-inflammatory medication they may be taking, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, at least 15 days prior to the injection.

For more information or to participate in the study, contact Dr Strickland or Dr Beth Shubin Stein (the study’s co-investigator) at 212-606-1725 or email stricklandoffice@hss.edu.

[Source(s): Hospital for Special Surgery, Newswise]