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Stem-cell therapy is poised to disrupt the Tommy John epidemic in baseball

Quartz—April 5, 2017

Quartz covered the origin of the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) tear in baseball players, and how the need for Tommy John surgery may be decreasing due to stem-cell therapy. It's become very common for baseball pitchers to tear their UCL, but having the surgery can pause an athlete's career for 18 months.

HSS sports medicine surgeon Joshua S. Dines, MD, was interviewed on how stem-cell therapy can be an alternative to surgery. He said that in his own practice, he’s been able to cut down the need for Tommy John surgery by about a third, thanks to his reliance on stem-cell therapy.

Dr. Dines believes this will limit the number of overall Tommy John surgeries because at this point, many pitchers get the surgery twice. He said stem-cell therapy can get teenaged pitchers through their first partial tear and even if they need to get the full surgery by 24, avoiding the first one is a "huge victory."

Read the full article at QZ.com




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