Laura Villaverde is a team mom for her daughter’s softball team, works a full-time job and is training for a marathon. She can’t slow down for knee pain.
Laura Villaverde: “My knee pain actually started with a skiing accident that I had in February of this year.”
Laura suffered a small meniscal tear in her right knee but she continued to push through the pain.
Laura Villaverde: “The pain is excruciating. There are times that I’ve been in my workout classes and I’ve just been sobbing from the pain that I get.”
But Laura didn’t want surgery.
Laura Villaverde: “I can’t be out of work for four weeks. I can’t be out of my activities for eight, 12 weeks while i’m recovering.”
So she went to OrthoNOW, an orthopaedic urgent care center, for help.
Dr. Alejandro Badia: “There are technologies, some cutting edge technologies, now that we have that can really give people some relief when they might not necessarily be surgical candidates.”
Laura was a candidate for the ‘Apic Procedure’.
Dr. Alejandro Badia: “Which stands for autologous platelet integrated concentration. It is a spin down of your own blood, so we’re taking your own factors.”
Here’s how it works: Blood is drawn from the patient and put into a machine that spins it down separating a protein called A2M, known as a pain-blocker.
Dr. Alejandro Badia: “It blocks the inflammation that leads to pain.”
The A2M protein is then put through a filtration system, then the concentrated protein is injected into the joint.
Dr. Alejandro Badia: “Within 24 hours you should feel amazing relief.”
Recent studies found the procedure can relieve pain for up to five months.
Dr. Alejandro Badia: “Now that doesn’t mean necessarily that you won’t need surgery down the road but many times that will resolve the problem or at least buy some time.”
We caught up with Laura one day after she had the APIC Procedure.
Laura Villaverde: “I’m feeling great. The grinding is gone, I feel better squatting, bending the knee, really feels great.”
She says with no more knee pain, she will be ready for her marathon in no time.
Laura Villaverde: “All smiles, ready to get back to my routine.”
The procedure was just approved by the FDA but is not yet covered by insurance. It can cost between $600-800 per treatment.