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Rising demand leads Regenexx to expand to St. Pete

Brian Hartz

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Regenexx Tampa Bay has opened an office in downtown St. Petersburg. Photo courtesy of Regenexx Tampa Bay.

After launching in Sarasota and adding offices in Tampa and Miami, Regenexx Tampa Bay has expanded to St. Petersburg, opening an office at 100 2nd Ave. S., Suite 904S. James Leiber, the company’s founding physician and medical director, told the Catalyst that he had been doing consultations in Pinellas County but patients who desired Regenexx — a nonsurgical, minimally invasive treatment for everything from pinched nerves and torn tendons to herniated discs and arthritis — had to travel out of the area to receive it. 

“Now we’re fully staffed and equipped to be able to do everything we do at the other locations,” Leiber said. 

Dr. James Leiber is the founding physician and medical director at Regenexx Tampa Bay.

Regenexx was developed in the early 2000s by a pair of physicians in Colorado. Leiber was one of the first doctors to join the fledgling Regenexx network, in 2012, and has seen the treatment method surge in popularity. 

“It’s for anybody who’s struggling with doing the activities that they love to do,” Leiber said, adding that many patients are seniors but the therapy is also commonly used by athletes and everyday people whose access to the procedure is growing, thanks to its adoption by major health insurance plan providers. 

“There are, I believe, at least 250 corporations across the country that have added Regenexx benefits for their employees,” he said. “Some local ones are Michaels, Dillard’s, ABC Liquors and MarineMax.”

Regenexx uses platelet, stem cell and bone marrow transplants to repair, strengthen and heal damaged tissue. It can also reduce inflammation and pain related to damaged tissue, which, as Leiber said, “decreases the need for ongoing use of narcotics, ongoing use of anti-inflammatory medications and cortisone or steroid injections, which have a whole host of potential adverse effects.” 

Regenexx treatments are needle-based and don’t require patients to undergo any type of extensive physical rehabilitation process. Leiber said a routine tendon tear or ligament tear can usually be treated with one or two shots and a patient’s condition will begin to improve within six to eight weeks. 

To achieve long-term, sustained results, a case of severe arthritis might require additional “maintenance” injections once per year, Leiber said, but he cautioned that Regenexx is not an instant cure-all procedure. 

“With arthritis, whether it’s mild, moderate or severe, we’re seeing, on average, about 60 to 70 percent levels of improvement in terms of pain and function, and we’re able to sustain that.” 

Regenexx, Leiber said, has no side effects and carries very little risk to the patient. 

“Our data shows that it’s no more risky than any other skilled needle procedures,” he said. “Whenever you stick a needle in someone there’s some risk associated with it, but if you do it with image guidance and with the proper training and skill, it’s a very low-risk procedure. It’s certainly not even in the same ballpark as a surgical procedure. That’s one of the things we’re trying to achieve — decreasing the potential for harm.”  

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