London, Nov 30 (ANI): Suffering from chronic back pain? Worry not, for you can now 'grow' a new spine, thanks to a revolutionary treatment.
Damaged discs, common among older people, occur when the discs between the vertebrae wear away, leaving them to rub against each other.
Until now few treatments have been available other than surgery - which has a high failure rate - or a lifetime on painkillers.
But now Swedish scientists have discovered how to regenerate the damaged discs in the back, which cause agony to sufferers.They have found that stem cell therapy could help the discs to self-heal.
Stem cells are the body's building blocks and possess a unique ability to repair damaged tissue and bone.
In the latest study at Gothenburg University in Sweden, researchers found there were areas on the edge of the discs which have similar properties to stem cells.
Their experiments on animals showed healing in the discs and they hope to repeat the results in human tests.
"It is generally believed that cartilage has very little or no capacity to heal," the Sun quoted chief researcher Helena Barreto-Henriksson as saying.
"Our study found the transplanted stem cells survived and that there was a certain degree of healing in the disc."
She added: "The advantage of such treatment over today's surgical approaches is that it would be a much simpler and less serious procedure for the patient." (ANI)