Amniotic membrane injections are a human membrane allograft (tissue is taken from one individual and given to another) harvested from the amniotic sac safely without harming the embryo. This process is safe for the donor and recipient. After potential donors submit their medical and social histories, they undergo a thorough risk assessment to ensure the recipients’ health.

The tissue contains several growth factors that can help regenerate damaged tissues. They can develop into various tissue types, including skin, cartilage, cardiac tissue, nerves, and bone. Amniotic membrane injections may reduce inflammation, repair joint bone fractures, treat post-operative pain, and reduce chronic pain caused by tendonitis and other disorders. The growth factors work to regulate healing.

How Does Amniotic Membrane Injection Work?

Amniotic tissue is composed of an extracellular matrix, which acts as a natural scaffold for cellular attachment and structural support for cells, collagen, fibrinogen, collagen hyaluronic acid, messenger RNA, and a host of growth factors. It also inhibits cytokines and proteins, which can cause inflammation.

Amniotic membrane injections heal damaged tissues naturally. While cortisone and other drugs only provide temporary relief. Amniotic membrane injection restore degenerated tissue and relieves pain. The hyaluronic acid in these injections lubricates the joints and tendons, easing pain and helping restore mobility. Amniotic membrane injections fill, cover, and protect a defect or void. The injections are FDA-approved.

How Do You Know If An Amniotic Injection May Be Right For You?

Amniotic membrane injections treatment is good for you if:

  • You are suffering from a foot, ankle, or heel injury
  • You are looking for a non-steroid and non-surgical option
  • You have not responded to conventional care to treat topical or oral anti-inflammatories such as physical therapy, rest, icing, and immobilization

What Conditions Do Amniotic Injections Help?

Amniotic membrane injections can help with the following: 

  • Wound care
  • Controlling pain 
  • Orthopedic uses like helping repair capsules, tendons, fasciae, and ligaments 
  • Post-operative pain resulting from orthopedic and spinal surgery

Other conditions that amniotic fluid injections may treat include the following:

  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Epicondylitis
  • Herniated discs 
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Synovial surfaces
  • Facet osteoarthritis 
  • ACL revisions 
  • Sprains
  • Bursitis
  • ACL and MCL tears 
  • Tendonitis  
  • Chronic fasciitis
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Rotator cuff surgery 
  • Lower back and neck pain
  • Acromioclavicular joint inflammation 
  • Foot and ankle arthroplasty 
  • Biceps and triceps tendonitis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Chronic tendinopathies
  • Tennis elbow
  • Knee scopes 
  • Golfers elbow
  • Tendon and ligament injuries

How Is Injection Delivered To The Injured Area?

The amniotic membrane content is injected into the afflicted area. The doctor may also use ultrasound or fluoroscopic guidance to place injections accurately. The injections are minimally invasive, and infection risk is minimal. 

How Long Is The Healing Process?

Damaged or abnormal tissue recovery takes 9-12 months to heal completely, but most people typically experience pain relief and mobility in 4-6 weeks.

Are Amniotic Membrane Injections Safe?

This injection is proven to be safe and effective. More than 10,000 injections have been performed without a single adverse side effect. They are safe to use because:

  • Patient rejection is rare because the mixture content comes from a safe site.
  • The use of amniotic membrane injections is well-researched and has been used by ophthalmologists and plastic surgeons for about 20 years. 
  • All amniotic membrane donors undergo a rigorous screening process, as regulated by the Food Administration and Drug Administration (FDA) and the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB), to ensure sterility and compliance. 

The injections are safe for the recipient as long as the product has been manipulated minimally and is homologous (the product performs similar roles in the recipient’s body just like it did in the donor’s body)

What Are The Benefits Of Amniotic Membrane Injections? 

Amniotic membrane injections benefits include:

  • Amniotic membrane injections contain no steroids and instead rely on naturally occurring anti-inflammatory agents such as cytokines which promote safe and natural healing
  • They contain hyaluronic acid, which lubricates cartilage and promotes new cartilage growth.
  • They contain growth factors, which stimulate tissue growth.
  • With amniotic membrane injections, there is no risk of patient rejection
  • Amniotic membrane injections restore degenerated tissues
  • They are FDA-approved, safe, and effective in joint pain management

Who Is a Suitable Candidate for Amniotic Fluid Injections?

Amniotic fluid injections are suitable for joint, tendon, or ligament pain patients. A doctor will assess and determine if the injections suit your condition.

You are likely not a candidate for amniotic membrane injection treatment if you have severe degenerative osteoarthritis, an infection, or a blood-related medical condition.

If you think amniotic membrane injections may benefit your foot and ankle pain, Dr. Susan A. Baker can help. Contact us today or request an appointment online to check if the injections can work for you.