Stem Cell Therapy for Back Pain in Malaysia in 2023

If you are looking for information related to stem cell and back pain in Malaysia, you've come to the right place. We have compiled and summarised essential information on back pain and degenerative disc disease below in layman's terms so that you can understand, clearer, less confused, less overwhelmed and make a better informed decision, either for yourself or your loved ones.

When people have back pain, the best thing to do is to look for the best advice from a trusted qualified medical doctor or a family physician. That means going to the doctor to find out the cause (diagnosis) of their back pain and better understand where their back pain is coming from.

You might also be wondering what type of 'doctors' that you should consult. There are many 'healthcare providers' involved in this 'back pain' ecosystem i.e. spine surgeons, radiologists, orthopaedic surgeons, physiotherapists, physical therapists, chiropractors and the list goes on. Back pain is common and therefore it's also a big business opportunity.

If you are new to stem cells, check out stem cell basics.

So the question is which healthcare professional should you see? You should see a healthcare professional immediately if your back pain is sudden and severe; or after you have tried many self-treatments from your Google or Youtube research and your back pain is still there. As for the type of healthcare provider, you should consult a general practitioner (a licensed and qualified medical doctor) first before you see a spine surgeon or other exotic back pain professionals with tons of Instagram followers. A general practitioner should be able to provide an independent professional opinion on whether there is a need for a referral to other medical specialists.

As a consolation, do take note that most back pain is self-limiting. There are many non-invasive methods to treat back pain and surgery or stem cell therapy are definitely not at the top of the list.

However, stem cell therapy has gained popularity as a promising treatment option for persistent back pain. There is also a lot of confusion due to the overwhelming mixing of credible scientific information and marketing hypes available on the internet.

We have compiled and summarised major clinical trials on back pain and degenerative disc disease below in layman's terms so that you can understand and make a better informed decision.

Do take note that back pain problems may arise from several causes and degenerative disc is just one of the many causes of back pain. Therefore, the importance of finding out the cause first before treatment.

Stem Cell Clinical Trials for Back Pain and Degenerative Disc Disease - Update 2020

In the world of medicine, you need to have a clinical trial to prove that something works.

There are many clinical trials showing the effectiveness of stem cell injections for lower back pain. Most patients in these studies had significant pain relief. Some patients also revealed reversal of disc degeneration. No patients had any serious complications. Since stem cells are a new development in medicine, there is not an abundance of data. However, the data that exists shows that stem cell injections into the disc results in pain relief and improvement in function.

In this landmark study by Pettine’s group (published in 2016), 26 patients with lower back pain had their lumbar discs injected with stem cells which were extracted from the bone marrow. After 2 years, 21 patients (81%) avoided surgery and had pain reduction of 71%. Their function improved by 64%. Additionally, 40% patients had improvements seen on the follow up MRI’s. No complications were reported.

Centeno’s group followed 2372 patients (published in 2016) who had stem cell injections in various joints for 2.2 years. 59 patients had stem cell treatment for the spine. They reported no serious side effects.

Wu’s group performed a metaanalysis (published in 2018) of all the clinical studies regarding stem cells injection into discs and concluded that, Cell-based therapy is for patients who have discogenic low back pain associated with improved pain relief and Oswestry Disability Index.

Approximately 30 pre-clinical animal studies using stem cells to treat DDD (Degenerative Disc Disease) have been published, with many demonstrating positive outcomes and others reporting no or worsened effects. 

There are 15 spinal cord pathology studies listed on with only two studies completed, four recruiting, four status-unknown, one suspended, two active-not-recruiting, one withdrawn and one terminated. Although some preliminary information has been obtained, much remains to be determined with respect to the best method of stem cell delivery, source of stem cell, numbers of cells to be delivered and the patient selection to receive such therapy. These considerations are common to all potential spine-related stem cell applications.

There are four FDA approved adipose derived stem cell clinical trials at Sanford Health: osteoarthritis of the knee, osteoarthritis of the wrist, rotator cuff tear, and facet joints.

There is a product currently in phase 3 clinical trials at the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) called Mesoblast. If the results from that study are favourable, then we could have stem cells available for the treatment of degenerative disc disease very soon.

Another clinical trial that has just completed it's recruitment, studied Mesenchymal Precursor Cells (MPCs) in 100 Subjects With Lumbar Back Pain.

The iPSpine project, a pan-European clinical trial was awarded €15 million in 2019 under the Horizon 2020 programme, towards researching a solution for chronic lower back pain. The huge public-private consortium is comprised of 20 partners, and is coordinated by the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the Utrecht University (Netherlands).

The iPSpine consortium was formed to initiate a European-led research effort to identify a future advanced therapeutic strategy that can address the societal need for a radical new treatment of IDD-induced LBP (Intervertebral Disc Degeneration - induced Low Back Pain).

The aim of iPSpine is to investigate and develop a new advanced therapy medicinal product (ATMP) of the future, based on a novel developmental biology approach involving induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and smart biomaterials.

Best Stem Cell Therapy Centres for Back Pain in Malaysia

Check out our top best stem cell therapy clinic list for back pain treatment below. The list of centres has been arranged in no particular order.

Methodology: The selection of the clinics is based on Google Search Results and information available on blogs and forums.

1) ARC (Advanced Regenerative Centre) Medical Group

ARC (Advanced Regenerative Centre) medical group is a wellness network of 8 centres in Klang Valley. ARC Medical Group offers a full range of aesthetic and wellness treatments for men and women of all ages and has a Letter of Credentialing and Privileging (LCP) Chapter 3 license from the Ministry of Health.

ARC Medical Group is among the popular anti-aging clinics in Malaysia and has clinics within 2 JCI (Joint Commission International) accredited hospitals in Malaysia i.e. SJMC and Pantai Hospital KL. Clinics are also available in Assunta Hospital, Ara Damansara Medical Centre, Life Care Medical Centre (Bangsar South), Publika KL and PJ Centrestage.

ARC Clinic - Mid Valley Branch (HQ)
31-11, Penthouse Signature Office Suite, The Boulevard, Mid Valley City,
Lingkaran Syed Putra, 59200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

ARC Medical Group Reviews: 5.0/5-star overall rating on Erufucare.

2) Orthopaedic Department, Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM)

Address: Jalan Yaacob Latif, Bandar Tun Razak, 56000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia.

Led by Senior Lecturer and Orthopedics & Arthroscopy, Dato’ Dr. Badrul Akmal Hisham Md Yusoff has successfully pioneered knee arthritis treatment using mesenchymal stem cell obtained from the umbilical cord.

The research since 2016 show that cartilage joint is reestablished completely after a year although the surface is not as smooth as the original cartilage without any side effects.

Dato’ Dr. Badrul Akmal Hisham said the treatment used donated umbilical cord. The donors need to through thorough screening in ensuring the safety and standards conformance.

“The stem cells will be cultured and bred in laboratories certified by the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency. The cells are then taken to HCTM to be inserted into the patient’s knee joint using an intra-articular injection method, ” he added.

All patients in the study had shown significant positive improvements as early as the third month and did not show signs of side-effects or problems during the study period.

Private company Cytopeutics Sdn Bhd, industry research partner play their role in screening the patients, conducting laboratory tests, and imaging prior to the knee orthoscopic surgery. During the surgery, stem cells are inserted into the knee joint and the patient is required to undergo follow-up treatment for 12 months.

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3) Kuala Lumpur Sports Medicine Centre (KLSMC)

Address: 7th Floor, Wisma Perintis, 47 Jalan Dungun, Damansara Heights, 50490 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

KLSMC Stem Cells Sdn. Bhd., a subsidiary of Kuala Lumpur Sports Medicine Centre, was established in 2005 specifically to spearhead the research on stem cells regenerative therapy in the musculoskeletal system. Following internationally recognized medical research ethics and protocols, a series of studies were undertaken culminating in 2007 with the beginning of the human pilot study.
Several clinical studies led by Dr. Saw Khay Yong (consultant orthopaedic surgeon and CEO) revealed a breakthrough discovery: in injecting the patient’s own blood stem cells, coupled with surgical intervention and physiotherapy, it was possible for patients to regenerate hyaline cartilage.

4) Cell Therapy Centre HUKM

Address: 12th Floor, Clinical Block, Bandar Tun Razak, 56000 Cheras, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Cell Therapy Center is one of the Center of Excellence in UKM Medical Centre (UKMMC) which provides cell-based therapy including hematopoietic stem cells, lymphocytes, dendritic cells, mesenchymal stem cells and mononuclear cells to patients with blood cancers, bone marrow diseases and degenerative diseases. The Cell Therapy Centre has the aspiration to be among the world leaders in research and development (R&D) of cancer immunotherapy and regenerative medicine.

5) Cell Malaysia Stem Cell Therapy

Cell Malaysia is situated in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and is a specialist centre that provides pioneering stem cell therapy techniques to patients from all over the world to help reduce the effects of the aging process.

Cell Malaysia, owned by Chamrun Health Sdn Bhd (1321092-P), was established in 2010 as a one-stop Stem Cell Therapy service provider assisting patients worldwide seeking for Stem Cell therapy through our panel of specialised doctors with years of experience in this field having treated hundreds of patients in the past decade.

Address: Lot 8, Jalan Bersatu, Jalan 13/4, 46200 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.

Reviews: 4.7/5 (Google)

Wrapping It Up

So, here you are. The best stem cell therapy clinics for back pain treatment in Malaysia. If there are any major stem cell therapy clinics that we’ve missed then please let us know in the comments!

Disclaimer: Stem Cell Therapy for Back Pain is an Experimental Therapy at this moment.

If you are in doubt which stem cell therapy centre to go, you can contact us for help. Please feel free to submit the form by clicking the link below:


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