You've been listed for a procedure called Lipogems injection treatment. This is to help with pain from osteoarthritis. Please find below some information about the expected outcome and possible problems for your information:
What is Lipogems? Lipogems is made from your own body's fat. The fat is harvested from your abdomen and then washed and fragmented in a special process. The resulting preparation contains stem cell and their precursors and is then injected into the affected joint.
How does it work? You will be taken to theatre and the procedure is undertaken under general anaesthetic. A special needle is used to harvest fat (less than 100ml) from your belly. It will then take a short while to wash and filter the tissue sample. The Lipogems fluid is then injected into the affected joint. This will often be done using x-ray or ultrasound guidance to ensure the injection ends up in the right place. The whole procedure will take approximately one hour. You should be able to go home later same day.
Is it going to be painful? You can expect mild pain and bruising from the abdomen where the adipose graft is harvested from. The injected joint may ache a bit for a few days. Normal pain killers will keep you comfortable.
Are there any risks? Infection is a very rare complication following the treatment. If you notice increasing redness, swelling and pain 3-10 days following the procedure you should seek advice from the surgeon, your GP or a Doctor in A&E.
Perforation of the abdomen/inner organs would be an extremely rare complication during the harvesting of the adipose cells. The surgeon carrying out the harvesting has many years of experience in this procedure and the risk is therefore very low.
Bruising: Mild bruising is common in the area where the fat is harvested. This will disappear with time and is not of any major concern.
Pain: You will have mild to moderate pain in the are where the fat was harvested from your belly. This should settle in the days following the procedure. The injected joint may be mildly uncomfortable/irritable for a few days.
Likely outcome: Lipogems is a new treatment. Although there is good scientific evidence to support its use, there is no success guarantee. According to the published literature about 80% of all patients can be expected to benefit from the treatment.
How long does the effect last for? Hopefully you will experience less pain for at least 9 months following the treatment with Lipogems. Some patients feel the improvement for much longer.
Physio: This will help to support the rehab process and is important to maximise the outcome from the procedure.