The Body is AMAZING
We see clients suffering from all types of chronic pain. Knees, however, seem to be a consistent symptom. For a lot of clients, their cartilage is wearing away. They are told they need a knee replacement, and they usually walk in our doors hoping to ‘delay the inevitable’. Their knee is bone-on-bone, they get an x-ray to confirm the doc’s hunch (now we have proof!) and there’s no other choice but to get a new joint, because, after all, you can’t regrow cartilage. A knee replacement is the client’s ‘health destiny’, and the sooner they realize that, the sooner they’ll get back to daily activities after they have it replaced. Sounds typical, right? Perhaps you’ve even had the talk with your orthopedic surgeon.
When Pete released Pain Free back in the early 90s, he made the claim that you can regrow cartilage and took a LOT of heat for saying so. Everyone thought he was crazy and dismissed his theory. If you don’t have a copy of Pain Free, here is what he has to say on page 107:
As for the ‘irreversible’ cartilage loss, why of all the tissue in the body would the cartilage by the only one that does not regenerate? The answer is that it does regenerate. Laboratory experiments in Sweden have shown that under the right conditions cartilage, like any tissue, can be grown. Moreover, sports medicine practitioners have long recognized that athletes increase their cartilage density and shock-absorbing capacity during proper training.
Once again, he was crucified for this statement. In his own words from Pain Free for Women he says, “That statement drew a barrage of criticism from doctors, researchers, and physical therapists. When cartilage is gone, they scolded me, it’s gone, and nothing short of a miracle will bring it back.”
Well, if it’s a miracle they want, then it’s a miracle they’ll get. Thanks to Rick Mathes in our Austin Clinic for providing these x-rays. We had a client working with one of our therapists who was told he had to have his knee replaced. Take a look at the first picture from April, 2004 and you’ll understand why the doc suggested it:
To help explain what you’re looking at, it’s as if you are facing this client. His right knee is on your left. Notice that on the far left hand side of the image there is decreased space between the femur (upper leg bone) and the tibia (lower leg bone). Loss of cartilage, right? I agree. This guy is surely headed for a knee replacement…or is he?
Take a look at the second set of x-rays from July, 2005, just a little over a year after the first were taken. Notice the uniform spacing between the femur and tibia. It’s a miracle! The cartilage is regrown! While I agree the cartilage is regrown, I don’t believe it necessarily qualifies as miraculous. Instead, I believe the client took charge of his health and put faith in his body that it can heal itself. What a remarkable difference, and all without going under the knife. When you switch from being symptom-focused (i.e. loss of cartilage and needing a knee replacement) to being cause-focused (i.e. why did the cartilage degenerate?), a lot can happen. Change the position of the knee joint, give the cartilage room to grow, and it will.
I love that there is finally ‘proof’ that Pete was right all those years ago. The body is an engineering miracle. It’ll heal itself if you just give it an opportunity. Keep moving!