View Full Version : Bone Marrow

03-01-2011, 01:47 PM
Any opinions on the use of bone marrow (from pelvic area) and fusion? I know BMP seems to be all the rage, but the surgeon I am seeing uses bone marrow.

03-01-2011, 04:18 PM
I know that they used our own materials in the past, but thought everybody had changed to BMP. Have you asked your doctor, why he didn't change over to BMP? I'm curious? I'm also full of BMP and just wondering how safe it is.

03-01-2011, 05:17 PM
My surgeon still uses bone marrow, I had a mixture of mine and donor used during my surgery. I never thought to ask why he doesn't use BMP. My fusion from my previous surgery is rock solid so I don't think it's something to be worried about of using one vs. another. Maybe it has to do with how old the patient is when they have the surgery or how many levels have to be fused?

03-01-2011, 05:45 PM
In my 12 level fusion in 8/09, my surgeon used bone from my rib. Last week, he used bmp to fuse my 3 levels of non-union. My surgeon is a partner with Dr. Zdeblick, a dr mentioned in the article cited here by rich1752, a couple or so threads down from this thread. That would lead me to believe that many surgeons do not routinely use bmp.

03-01-2011, 07:06 PM
It may be an insurance issue. Some insurers will not allow BMP or will allow only a little of it because it is so expensive and actually not even FDA approved for long fusions, I believe. (It is used "off label.")

Also, my doc said he would use both BMP and my own bone to get the best fusion he could. I took that to mean he would have more material to work with and also that autograft (sp?) might in some ways heal better than BMP (though I believe BMP is supposed to be faster).

Finally, there are some side effects of BMP in various studies, so maybe your doc is just being very cautious about those or anything else unknown that could happen.

03-01-2011, 09:29 PM
I think it is age related and fusion levels. Younger people fuse better, I think. I have a lot of BMP but also have some of my own bone mixed in "like a stew" as my operating report said. Also, my spine bone density was pretty bad even though my hips and wrist were above normal. But there do seem to be more cases of nonunion fusion levels in the older patients.