Knee Pain

The Regenerative Medicine Clinic

Orthopaedic Surgeon & Molecular Immunobiologist located in Wilmington, NC

Your knees are complex joints that endure a lot of stress during your lifetime and it’s this impact loading that causes arthritis directly. Arthritis is a mechanically induced disease with sinister molecular consequences. If you have bow legs or are knock-kneed (less common), your knees are twice as vulnerable to developing arthritis, injury and pain. Did you know that arthritis actually starts in the bone under the cartilage and that’s it’s a disease of bone and all the joint tissues, not just cartilage? Understanding these concepts led us to develop the Naoplastytm procedures to combat arthritis at its rate limiting starting point. Austin Yeargan III MD, Steadman fellowship trained orthopedic surgeon at The Regenerative Medicine Clinic, specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of knee pain and takes the simplest, most efficacious and natural approach to joint care. We just want you to get back to doing what you enjoy as soon as you can with the least intervention. For an appointment, contact the office in Wilmington, North Carolina, by phone or book your visit online. Dr. Yeargan also offers telemedicine consultations.

Knee Pain

What causes knee pain?

You can develop knee pain after an injury, or it may occur due to an underlying disease.  Arthritis either comes from a crush injury to the bone underneath the cartilage acutely or from chronic impact loading of the concave side of the joint by the convexity.  Common causes of knee pain include:

  • Arthritis
  • Fracture
  • Dislocation
  • Meniscus tear
  • Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear or other knee internal derangement sequelae
  • Tendonitis
  • Synovitis
  • Autoimmune disease


Pain can also be caused by loose bodies, which are fragments of bone or cartilage in the knee.  Often these can be removed with a simple Nanoscope® (Arthrex®, Naples, FL) procedure performed in the office. Knee pain can also develop if you’re overweight or obese or if you’re altering the way you walk due to issues related to your spine, hips, ankles or feet.

What are common knee pain symptoms?

The symptoms you experience from your knee pain may depend on the underlying cause. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • Dull ache
  • Sharp, severe pain
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Obvious deformity
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Unable to bear weight on the knee

If your knee pain impairs your ability to use your knee and enjoy your recreational and vocational pursuits the way you want, consider scheduling an appointment with Dr. Yeargan for an evaluation.  At the very least we can honestly tell you what all your options are.

How is knee pain treated?

Treatment for your knee pain depends on the underlying cause. Despite being an expert orthopedic surgeon trained by key opinion leaders and authorities in the most coveted training programs in the world, Dr. Yeargan takes the most conservative approach to care, looking for the simplest, most natural treatment option to relieve your knee pain and support healing of the underlying cause.

We are first and foremost an arthritis management clinic and our treatments don’t always include regenerative medicine recommendations and may include:

  • Specific Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Over-the-counter pain medication
  • Physical therapy and occupational therapy
  • Assistive devices like orthotics and unloader bracing
  • Dietary modification
  • Exercise programs
  • Immunobiologics
  • Biosimilars 

What is ‘Regenerative Medicine’? 

Regenerative medicine is a hazy new area of medical care focused on supporting your body’s natural healing process.  We made up the term to use for marketing in 2006 and it has stuck ever since. At that time, we were confident that if we named our clinic the Immunobiologic Clinic, it might be hard for patients to understand what we were trying to do. The Regenerative Medicine Clinic uses stem cell therapy and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy for regenerative treatments primarily although there are a handful of other treatments with limited efficacy that may be applicable to your case in particular.

Signaling (stem) cell based therapy is your body’s immature but still adult cells that have the ability to transform into other cells to help heal and regenerate new tissue through immunobiologic signaling cascades. With signaling cell-based therapy, Dr. Yeargan injects the signaling cells both intraosseously and into the joint space and soft tissues to get the best result and extend results. 

PRP is a blood product created from your own blood. PRP has a high concentration of platelets that contain growth factors and other specialized proteins. When injected into your knee, the healing properties in the PRP assist in reducing inflammation, easing pain, and supporting the healing process.  An extra step that is missed by most clinics is critical to lyse open the dense granules in the platelets that contain growth factors and clotting proteins.  Without this critical step, PRP is a waste of time and money. PRP still struggles for a real clinical indication as a standalone treatment. 

What knee conditions benefit from regenerative medicine?

Dr. Yeargan is a regenerative orthopedic specialist and may use regenerative medicine for many knee conditions, such as arthritis, tendonitis, meniscal tears, and ligament sprains. The goal of his regenerative medicine treatment is to maximize all conservative treatment options before resorting to surgery.  Ideally degenerative arthritis of the knee is managed best with Nanoplastytm immunobiologics. 

For an evaluation of your knee pain, call The Regenerative Medicine Clinic or apply online.