GOOD FOR WHAT AILS YOU: STEM CELL TREATMENTS - An Interview with Dr. William Pezzello of Lyceum Physical Medicine

By Gloria Dulan-Wilson

Hello All:

Periodically, I post articles on health, medical findings, food and nutrition - things that we don't often get information about, but are essential to our well being, and could change our very lives.  There are so many of us walking around in chronic pain, or with chronic diseases that could and should have been cured long ago, but because we are dealing with archaic medical practices, and a recalcitrant insurance industry, and big pharma who continues to get rich off of prescriptions that maintain us at our level of misery but not  healing us, while bilking us out of billions of our hard earned dollars, while simultaneously blocking those protocols that provide real cures.  

One such protocol that took a bashing from big pharma via the religious right is Stem Cells.  Most of us have heard of it, but only from the hostile propaganda launched against it during the Bush administration, claiming that embryos were being harvested for their stem cells to cure people of diseases.  The  result was that stem cell were banned and millions of lives that could have been saved, limbs that could have been spared, and drug over doses that could have been prevented escalated instead.  There is nothing more dangerous than a half truth.  And that is what we had been the victims of as a result of this attack on what is perhaps the greatest healing miracle known to man or woman - because what they failed to reveal is that there were other sources of stem cell available that did not involve embryos - such as aspirating the cells from bone marrow - or using your own stem cells from your own blood - also known as autolougus stem cells - and processing them and re-injecting them into the place where the primary injury is located so that the degenerated cells will completely heal, without surgery, amputation, or crippling prosthetics.  

Had it not been for President Obama making it legal for the use of autolougus stem cells, when he first took office, the US would still be lagging seriously behind the rest of the world in this wonderful protocol.  So I'm going to try to give you a heads up as to the viability of stem cells and debunk some of the distortions that have kept so many of us from taking advantage of a process that will change your very lives.  

Of course you can Google stem cells and you'll get a variety of information, but I thought it better to get it directly from someone who has been using it to alleviate pain such as arthritis, bursitis and other ailments that commonly assail those of us of a certain age.  And actually you don't have to be 50+ to develop these problems, but that's the time when the pharmaceutical industry begins to load you up with all kinds of dangerous medicines that, or start talking about taking body parts because of the advanced stages of these conditions, and the fact that we've been brainwashed to believe that those are the best protocols for our age group.    

This interview is with Dr. William Pezzello, of Lyceum Physical Medicine in Philadelphia, PA.  It will be more of a conversation than an interview, but I will interject any information or clarification I think might be instrumental in your better understanding the efficacy of stem cell treatments over the other methods, most of which are obsolete by international standards.  

NOTE:  WP = Dr. William Pezzello; GDW = Gloria Dulan-Wilson

Today is Tuesday, April 5, 2016 – we are at Lyceum Physical Medicine, and I am talking with Dr. William Pezzello, who is...

WP: I am the director of the office, and President, and my training is Chiropractic – although I'm limited in that now with my role as director of the office.

Dr. William Pezzello, President of Lyceum Physical Medicine

GDW: So, we're going to talk about something very specific though, in reference to an orientation you held back in March, 2016, dealing with Stem Cells. Because I don't think people realize that right here in Philadelphia there are options and opportunities for people who are undergoing the knife, to actually perhaps save their knees, save their ankles, or whatever body parts might be affected, through some of the protocols that you have here. But tell me specifically about the protocol that you have, which is PX50.

WP: There are eight companies in the United States that the FDA's approved to use a product that's derived from placental tissue. It's called Placental Tissue Matrix, and it is from amniotic fluid – and Skye Biologics is one of the companies that we use. The PX50 Product is packaged that way because it includes some growth factors – cytokines, which is the forming cells that kind of tell the stem cells where to go and what to do. So it it has some other growth factors within the same injection, and that's what has created the product within this lab called PX50.

GDW: Okay, so I'm kind of familiar with the autolougus Stem Cell, where you're using your own Stem Cells, and its processed with some growth factors and then injected back into where ever the problem happens to be. What's the difference between the two?

WP: Well the {difference} is primarily the amount of stem cell, the density of the stem cells that are being injected. So as you age, the number of stem cells you have already in your body decreases. So at the age of newborn, you have 1 stem cell per 10,000 cells; at 70 you have 1 stem cell per 2 million cells. So as you age the number of stem cells that you have to help you heal decreases. So, we can kind of understand that, because we know that when we're young we heal up very fast, and as we get older it tends to take a little longer to heal. And stem cells are the healing cells, so that's just a little analogy that's kind of easy for every one to understand.

GDW: Okay, let's put some anxiety to rest, because there's been a lot of mis-information about where stem cells come from. Amniotic stem cells are NOT embryonic.

WP: Exactly – embryonic stem cells are not legal in the United States. Although they are the best stem cells, if you were to try to find the best stem cells, because they are pluripotent – which means the can turn into any other cell in your body. There are 230 different types of cells in the body, and they can turn into any one. The other option in the amniotic stem cells is that they are multipotent, so they can become pluripotent with some of the growth factors inside them.   There are some other guidelines that you cannot utilize in the United States – like growing stem cells outside of the body. So embryonic stem cells, although perfect for healing, are not legal in the US.

GDW: I think the other issue with embryonic stem cells though is that they kind of have a tendency to cause tumors, and don't know when to stop growing,   which could  cause more harm than good. I did a little homework because I wanted to clarify the differences for myself. 
So now tell me about the service that you offer here at Lyceum Physical Medicine as you explained it at the program about a month ago, in terms of how you proceed; some of the services you offer with the Stem Cells, and what the cost factors might be; and how that can be mitigated or financed.

WP: So  the procedure that we use here is tailored to you – so it can be performed with other services around it. So people understand that if they got a stem cell injection, or any type of injection, that probably some kind of physical therapy could be utilized with it; as could probably some kind of bracing to take the pressure off the knee to allow the knee to be a little more receptive to the stem cells, and give them an better environment to grow and help you heal. And in addition to those types of services, which you might think would fit really well with the stem cell, there are other injections that you get, so you could – and you do not have to – you could just get a stem cell injection and that's it! But you could also as a follow up visit, receive the PRP as a kind of back up to that.

GDW: Okay, PRP – let's define it for those who don't know.

WP: Platelet rich plasma in which we take your blood, we spin it in a centrifuge and draw the stem cells off of your blood; and because you do have less stem cells as you age, it's nice in a person that's a little bit older – I would say over 40 – to use it as an adjunct, and not the main service as it relates to the stem cell. But in addition to that, you could receive the traditional hyalouronic acid injections.

NOTE:  Platelet Rich Plasma was used to heal Superbowl champion, Hinds Ward, after he tore his ACL and it looked as though he would not be able to play.  After the injection, two weeks later he was able to play and win the championship.  It's been used by countless athletes over the past few years.  It acts as more of a pain reliever  during the healing process.  

GDW: But why would one want to do that (use hyalouronic acid)  if they're getting the stem cell?

WP: Well again because it would help – hyalouronic acid is naturally occurring in the knee and in joints, so it would help to decompress the joint, and give the joint a little more breathing room and a little more relaxation as the stem cells are growing. It doesn't have to be done, but, sometimes it's a good service depending on the situation.

GDW: I'm 60 pounds over my weight limit - which is very scary because of my bone structure – and it would seem to me that anyone – specifically like me with my knees – anyone getting stem cells would also have to shed that weight in order to give themselves the appropriate measure of success for total healing. Is that something that you would work on as well?

NOTE:  Loss of mobility often leads to weight gain due to decreased activity, resulting from pain, stiffness or swelling.  It's a vicious cycle. You can't exercise because of the pain; therefore your metabolism slows down and you pick up excess weight. If the weight problem is not addressed, and the knees or other joints are healed, the deterioration will be accelerated by trying to support excess weight.  The two have to go hand in hand. 

WP: That's something that I probably should have mentioned with the adjunctive services for sure – so weight loss definitely is going to take pressure off of the knees – as you have less weight there is going to be less weight onto the knees.   And a little bit of an aside on that, we use chiropractic adjustments to help to balance the pelvis out because if you are having a knee that is degenerated and is aging at a different rate than your other knee, chances are that there is something that's causing that -  that's causing imbalance in the pelvis, and spine. So we utilize the chiropractic with the weight loss program, if a person is in a situation where it would help them to knock some weight off.   And, I wanted to say,  if a person is losing a lot of weight, because the weight distribution changes on the knees, it can be a relief from knee pain.   But it also could cause extra pain on the knee because of the way that the body is used to holding on to weight, and you've distributed it over your knees, and now, when you lose weight, people tend to  sometimes get a little achier because they're not used to their lighter body weight yet – interesting.

GDW: Amazing. Clearly stem cells, right now, are not approved by the major US insurance companies – so a regular working person might not have the funds for this. What would be a way that they could actually access the services here.

WP:  We always tell people that we are not the insurance company's doctor; we're your doctor! So what's important to understand is that insurance companies don't cover a lot of services – I could just say nutrition services – that would be beneficial to a person's health. So I try to steer people away from thinking that whatever's on their insurance company's menu is, is the best thing for them to choose. Because that's not the case. Your insurance company is just picking up certain services for you and contributing, but that does not mean that that is the best protocol for your health. Knowing that, and knowing that insurance companies are generally going to be a little bit behind as it relates to newer services, we offer financing. And so we use a few different companies. We use a company called Care Credit; another company called First Mutual, and another company called My Treatment Lender. All of those most people can be approved for – even the credit scores can be as low as 550, and then on up! And, I would say that at least two of those offer and 18 month, or a 2 year interest free option, where you can pay off over the course of a year or two years and not incur any interest whatsoever. So we try to help the best we can with issue; and we process all of that in the office. It takes about ten minutes to determine whether or not you're approved for that. And you can be approved for that and receive the injection on the same day. And I will say that as we run those programs what we notice is that sometime the payment is as low as $150.00 per month. So to regain new knees $150.00 a month is a pretty good deal – for two year's worth of payments for $150.00 per month. So, I think that that's a good option.

GDW: One of the things that you do say is that if both knees were affected and had to be done there was a discount that could be worked for the individual – could you talk a little bit about that?

WP: When we buy stem cells in bulk, and we purchase the stem cells for you as an individual – if we buy one injection, we pay a certain amount for the one injection. If we buy two injections, or three injections, they give us a discount that we pass right on to you and with the second injection, it's as much as a thousand dollars ($1,000); and on the third injection, it's as much as fifteen hundred dollars ($1,500). It's a pretty significant discount. Why  might you need to purchase three?   There's a couple of reasons.   Two knees -  you might want to take care of two knees at the same time; and then as you see the treatment working, and you get to your maximum benefit you will have received from the injections.   At that time some people like to get an additional injection to continue that healing process and to continue to regenerate the joints. So, I mentioned PRP earlier – which is one way to do it – I call it a booster shot, after the initial injection; but you can get another stem cell injection into the same joint. So, in a person with two knees, we might do one injection in one knee, one injection in the other knee and split the injection into the two knees as a booster. We have had people who have had a knee issue and then they have a rotator cuff issue, and we'll inject into the shoulder the second one. They want to take care of that because there is a significant discount when they buy in bulk. There also are people who have bought two injections for themselves, and then because the discount is so deep, the third injection is for a spouse or a loved one whose having an injury – maybe a shoulder injury that they can utilize it for them; so as you purchase more, there's more of a discount.

NOTE:  For those of you who are squeamish about injections, the needles are extremely small.  Additionally, consider this - which would you rather have - a short prick of a needle with long term healing benefits; or someone lobbing off your knees permanently, and you hobbling around on a walker or a cane for the rest of your life?

GDW: So let me ask you is the healing considered permanent? Or are you looking at maybe six months of healing?

WP: So, it's not like a cortisone injection, where they say this cortisone injection is going to take a week to work. And then the injection itself or any other type of injection is going to last x-amount of time. Whether it does or doesn't last that long is a whole other conversation. But with stem cells, it's a cumulative effect. So when you get an injection of stem cells you will see a cumulative affect of the progress of the stem cells and how they're working in the body for up to 8 months. So at the end of 8 months you will have received your maximum benefit from the stem cell injection. And you can say this is my maximum benefit and decide if you want to continue with another booster shot of the stem cell. But it is not like a medication injection; stems cells are natural – it's not medication. So, where the medication would wear off, it's not that time period – you will have your cumulative affect and will see your maximum benefit by about 8 months, and then the normal degenerative process will take place – so you basically have new knees, and now if you treat them poorly, or your body is degenerating in an abnormally excessive amount of speed, you will experience the regular degenerative process. But having a new knee and experiencing this process – so, it doesn't wear off; it doesn't go away; and it's permanent as it relates to that. And then again, you could kick it up to the next level and get another stem cell injection, and I think it would feel terrific for sure.

GDW: We talked a little bit about older people not having a sufficient amount of stem cells, is there an age limit as to who can benefit?

WP: Among the patients themselves, no, there is no age limit. That more comes into play – that age factor – when you talk about the platelet rich plasma (PRP) where you're utilizing your own blood. So when you're utilizing your own blood, you're going to have fewer stem cells. But when you're using the amniotic stem cells – the placental tissue matrix – any age can benefit from that. I will say that we do not – there are some people who don't qualify as to our office protocols.

GDW: So what would that look like -

WP: What that might look like is a person who comes in who has had degeneration in the hips or knees for 20 or 25 years, and when you look at an x-ray you can't tell where one bone – if you're looking at a knee joint – where the thigh bone begins and ends and the knee or lower leg bones begin and end. It just looks like one – almost like candle wax. If the joint is obliterated you may be too far along to benefit from the stem cells; and in that situation that's when you're faced with a knee replacement. Or a hip replacement option. So anyone can benefit from them – we just do not inject any one. We inject you if we feel that you're a good candidate; and it's based on doing your examination; looking at your x-rays and them making a decision if we feel you'd benefit from it. But as it relates to age, as long as you fall within those parameters, age is not a factor.

NOTE:  If you have already had a knee or hip replacement, stem cells will not benefit you from the standpoint of regenerating cartilage - once the body part has been removed it's permanent.  

GDW: You had said something that kind of intrigued me when you said that the amniotic stem cells was so multipotent, that you could inject it almost anywhere in the body and it would seek out where ever the deficiencies were and heal it.

WP: Yes, with the help of cytokines, which are the informants and kind of tells the stem cell tissue where to go and stay. So, for better or for worse, the stem cell and the body tissue cells – and the body period, and the innate ability to heal the body is very fantastic. And the body is very smart. But, what's always interesting to me is that when they mention protocols for stem cell injections, it's one of the easiest procedures for the doctor to do, because the stem cells are so smart that they do know were to go. So you do not have to be a marksman with a syringe in order to get those things into the exact right spot. They will know how to get in there and where to begin to grow, and multiply and regenerate.

GDW: So, in other words, if you were doing the knee, would it still also have that broad generative effect, or would it only be confined to the knee.

WP: It would only be confined to the knee. There are other ways to get stem cells into the body. We're talking in this conversation about intramuscular injections. The other way you could get stem cells into the body from an outside source is to inject them intravenously – and so some people who have maybe rheumatoid arthritis, may have knee injections done, because they're having knee issues; but in addition to that, may have stem cells injected through IV, and that will have a more global effect because it's traveling through the blood system, and then the stem cells will jump off where they see fit.

GDW: That's amazing.

WP That is amazing. So people sometimes will get IV injections – on or two IV injections for stem cell, and in addition to that, get knees done, hands done and really getting a whole new life. And we know that the stem cells – people commonly hear stem cells and talk about bone marrow transplants – and so when you mention that to people, that kind of always – that's something people are familiar with hearing. And they've been doing bone marrow transplants with stem cells for years and years. And the results are usually pretty terrific with so -

GDW: I know they also use it for heart and certain kinds of cancers.

WP: I was listening to one of those TED talks on the internet today, and they were talking about how they were using it for ears – for hearing. We had a patient that came in and had both of their knees done, and he was telling me that the reason he decided to have his knees done was that his wife was an optometrist and they are using them in contact lenses to help with they eyes.

GDW: Yes, that was what I was reading the other day also.

WP: So cancer, help with the eyes. We've read recently from Parkinson disease to attention deficit disorder.

GDW: Well you know this the thing with Muhammad Ali that they were trying to get him – because Michael J. Fox was one of the biggest proponents. And, of course, President Obama who, thank God, made it legal in the United States – that was the first thing he did. After all that brouhaha over nothing. Before we close, talk to me about Lyceum Physical Medicine.

WP:  Lyceum Physical Medicine is an integrated facility where we combine traditional medical care with alternative practitioners. And, what's nice about it is, rather than travel from doctor to doctor to doctor, and not have a cohesive plan for your health, you act as the foreman for your health at Lyceum Physical Medicine, because it's integrated. We have the traditional medical care, with the alternative practitioners, with the physical therapy, and even the weight loss – to allow for a cohesive approach to your care. Any of the care plans are brought to the table as a team and you have medical physicians speaking with chiropractors, speaking with rehabilitation people, to discuss your care. And we do that before every one of your visits. So, if you come to the office three times in a week, we're going to have a discussion about you three times in a week prior to you coming in that day. And it has been far greater, as it relates to the results, than I could have ever imagined. The results that people receive are fantastic, and the reception that we've had with this type of model - which is pretty unique - has been pretty terrific. So we want to bring services in that we feel are going to benefit you, and they fit along our purpose lines. We don't bring things in because we think that financially it's a terrific situation for us. We bring things in because they're good for you. We do not bring things in because your insurance company does or does not pay for them, we bring things in for you so we're open to receiving suggestions also from patients when they hear things on TV, or they hear things are happening in another part of the country, we're open to investigating anything that might be of benefit to you. And because we have a large staff we're able to carry the treatments out for you.

GDW: That's excellent - that is excellent – do you want to give me some last words before we close?

WP: Well my last words are this: I think that the body responds to healthy habits – so you have to start today in order to see that tomorrow. So the longer that you wait to take care of yourself, the more issues that you tend to have, and the more difficult they are to fix. So when we have patients that come in like you – Gloria – I think that it's an inspiration to us because we get a real opportunity to see how the care works; because you're dedicated to your health, and you're consistent with your care and you participate with what we offer at the office – and sometimes that's the hardest part – to get the patient here so that we can help to take care of them. So, in closing words I would like everyone to mirror your model for the office, which is sticking with your visits, participating in your health and being interested in your health, because I think ultimately that's the difference between whether a person is successful at being healthy.

GDW: Thank you!!!  What a compliment.  

NOTE: In addition to the Stem Cell protocol, Lyceum offers Supartz, Hyalouronic Acid, full range of chiropractic services, dietary and weight loss services, including laser liposuction; allergy screenings, and hands on physical therapy.  They accept most forms of insurance.  And the staff is  a delight to work with.

They are located at 
6062 Ridge Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19128 (on Ridge near Lyceum in Roxborough)
Check out their FaceBook Page 

You can tell them you read the article in Gloria Dulan-Wilson Blog - it won't get you a discount, but it's nice to know. 



Stay Blessed & 


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