Dana Niguel Veterinary Hospital was one of the first veterinary hospitals to be trained and credentialed in stem cell therapy, and remain Dana Point’s premier specialist.
Stem cells are among the body’s most useful tools. These special cells are able to adapt according to specific needs, changing into various tissues including skin, muscle, bone and nerve, as well as repairing vital internal organs like the heart, liver and lungs.
Two distinct types of stem cells exist: embryonic and somatic. Embryonic cells are found in placentas and developing embryos, they offer a wide range of possible applications but are not used by Dana Niguel Animal Hospital due to ethical sourcing concerns. Instead, we use somatic stem cells found in a variety of adult tissues like bone marrow, skin and fat. While not as potent as their embryonic counterparts, these cells are able to differentiate into related cell types and are introduced to speed up healing and regeneration. Fortunately, harvesting these this type of stem cell has no moral drawbacks, as they are taken from mature animals without harm.
Dana Niguel sources our somatic stem cells from adipose tissue, also known as fat cells. This common substance contains 50 to 1000 times the concentration of stem cells compared to other tissues like bone marrow. The harvesting procedure is easy and less invasive than common procedures like spaying.
What to Expect From Stem Cell Therapy
After administering light anesthesia, our veterinarian will remove 2-3 tablespoons of fat cells from your pet. These cells are processed and the stem cells are obtained, the process typically takes several hours. Afterwards, the stem cells are reintroduced into the affected area or the bloodstream, helping the body recover from joint, ligament and tendon damage; or bone fractures.
To learn more about stem cell therapy please contact your Dana Niguel veterinarian.