Regenerative medicine involves techniques to replace, engineer or regenerate cells and tissue to restore or establish normal function. Techniques include injections of stem cells, bone marrow aspirate and amniotic tissue which all supply needed hormones and substances that enable non-healing tissue to heal. Heel pain due to plantar fasciitis or plantar fasciosis is the perfect indication for regenerative medicine.
Many practices, including my own, now use some type of placental tissue as an in-office injection.
Placental tissues may include the placental disc, umbilical cord and the amniotic membrane. These tissues do contain stem cells but in smaller concentrations; however they have the same advantages of controlling inflammation and preventing scar formation which is common in chronic heel pain. These "amnio injections" contain all the good stuff such as extracellular matrix, growth factors, cytokines and collagen. They function as a foundation for the regenerative process and support restoration of tissue.
So next time your podiatrist recommends an injection for your heel pain, don't be surprised if it's not a cortisone injection!