Stem cell therapies have been helping athletes recover from injuries more quickly for the past decade or so. According to Sports Illustrated, more thousands of athletes have received stem cell therapy. That number is only increasing as the years have gone on. We went out and found the top athletes who received stem cell therapy in order to recover from injuries or take their game to the next level. Do you recognize any of the names?
ACL & MCL Stem Cell Treatments
Tiger Woods is one of the most prolific golfers in the history of the game. He has suffered a number of knee and back injuries that have hampered his ability to compete at the top level. Tiger has received platelet rich plasma treatments for his joints and back. The treatments have allowed Tiger to improve his game and win the 2019 Masters.
2) Stephen Curry | NBA PG
Steph Curry has risen to be one the most prolific point guards in the history of the NBA. He suffered a grade one MCL sprain on his right knee during the 2016 season playoffs. In order to speed up the recovery process, he received PRP treatment. He was able to recover and rejoin the team to contribute to their playoff run.
3) Conor McGregor | MMA Fighter & Boxer
Conor McGregor, the incredible MMA fighter and boxer, received stem cell injections to recover from a torn ACL in his knee. McGregor received the treatment along with physical therapy and was able to make a full recovery before his next fight.
Knee Stem Cell Therapy Treatments
4) Brooks Koepka | Professional Golfer
Brooks Koepka received stem cell therapy on his left knee after playing through knee pain during the 2019 season. The stem cell therapy was able to help him recover from a partially torn patella tendon. He is able to play and practice without any pain in his left knee.
5) Josh Hamilton | Former MLB Player
During 2016, Josh Hamilton underwent stem cell therapy on his left in order to continue to attempt to play at the highest level. The process was sadly unsuccessful and he was not able to play during the 2016 season. This failure highlights the fact that stem cell therapy procedures in the United States are often not up to par with the rest of the world.
6) Takashi Saito | MLB Closer
In 2008, Saito was a closer for the L.A. Dodgers when he partially tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. Doctors told him he would need to have Tommy John surgery, but he received PRP treatment instead. The treatment worked and he was able to stage a comeback 9 to 12 months ahead of schedule and return for the 2008 season.
7) Adrian Clayborn | NFL Defensive End
Adrian Clayborn suffered a meniscus tear and a torn medial collateral ligament in his left knee in 2016. He had to undergo knee surgery in order to repair the damage. After the procedure, he received stem cell injections to speed up his recovery process. The stem cell injections worked and was able to return to practice a week ahead of schedule.
8) Chris Johnson | Former NFL Running Back
Chris Johnson tore his meniscus and lost a lot of the cartilage that allowed him to be such a dynamic running back. He received stem cell injections to the damaged knee in hopes that the cartilage would repair itself. He was able to play in the NFL for another four seasons after he received the stem cell treatment.
9) Jamaal Charles | Former NFL Running Back
Jamaal Charles is one of the most talented running backs, but he sadly tore his ACL in his right knee. During the surgery to repair his ACL he received stem cell injections to the affected area. He also received stem cell injections six weeks after the surgery.
10) Knowshon Moreno | Former NFL Running Back
Knowshon Moreno received stem cell therapy on his knees back in 2013 after years of playing in the NFL. He was able to continue playing in the NFL season for another season. It is not clear what exactly he received the stem cell therapy to treat.
11) Alex Rodriguez | Former MLB Shortstop
Alex Rodriguez is one of the most famous baseball players of all time. He played in the MLB for 22 seasons and one of the reasons he was able to play for so long was stem cell therapy. He traveled to Germany in 2011 to receive PRP on both his left shoulder and right knee in order to prevent inflammation. He was able to play until 2016 when he decided to retire.
12) Aaron Curry | Former NFL Linebacker
Aaron Curry was widely considered a draft bust after being picked fourth overall in the 2009 NFL draft. In order to treat his ailing body Curry received stem cell therapy back in 2012. The therapy helped his knees feel better, but did not help his performance on the field and retired in 2013.
13) Pau Gasol | Professional Basketball Player
Pau Gasol was struggling with knee pain during the 2013 NBA season. Gasol received an operation to remove scar tissue from his knee and received a stem cell injection along with the operation. Gasol made an incredibly quick recovery and was walking without crutches in just three weeks.
14) Kobe Bryant | Former NBA Player
Kobe Bryant was one of the greatest NBA players of all time. The gradual degradation of his knees gave him problems throughout his playing career. He would often go to Germany to receive PRP therapy on his knees. The treatment was successful and he was able to extend his career in the NBA.
15) Jarvis Green | Former NFL Defensive Lineman
Jarvis Green’s knees were completely destroyed after playing in the NFL for almost a decade. He could barely walk up the stairs. He opted to receive stem cell therapy to restore some of the cartilage in his knees. The recovery was remarkable and he was pain free just a few weeks after his procedure.
16) Sidney Rice | Former NFL Wide Receiver
Sidney Rice barely had any cartilage left in his knees before the 2013 season. He went to Switzerland in order to receive stem cell therapy in an attempt to restore some of the cartilage. Rice was able to return to action in the 2013 season, but he retired the following year because of the multiple concussions he suffered during his career.
17)Rolando McClain | NFL Linebacker
Rolando Mclain was dealing with pains and aches that come with playing in the NFL. He decided to receive stem cell therapy for his knee pain and an ankle injury. The therapy helped him feel better for the 2012 NFL season.
Cartilage, Tendons, and Muscles
18) LaRon Landry | Former NFL Safety
LaRon Landry had to miss most of two NFL seasons with a nagging left achilles injury. The future of his football career was in doubt. Remarkably, he was able to play three more full NFL seasons without injury. Landry received stem cell and PRP therapy and completely avoided surgery.
19) Dara Torres | Olympic Swimmer
Dara Torres has won Olympic medals in five different Olympic games. After the 2008 summer Olympics, she realized that she had severe arthritis in her knee. In 2009, she underwent an incredible stem cell transplant to repair the cartilage in her knee. The procedure was extremely successful. The cartilage grew back in her knee and she was able to compete in the 2012 and 2016 summer olympics.
20) Uche Nwaneri | Former NFL Guard
Uche Nwaneri played in the NFL for seven seasons all with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He received arthroscopic surgery on his knee to clear out the scar tissue in 2013 and then received an injection of stem cells. He was able to play all 16 games in 2013 for the Jaguars.
21) Israel Dagg | Rugby Player
Israel Dagg played for one of the most competitive rugby teams in the world, the New Zealand All Blacks. During his playing career the cartilage in his knees was completely eroded. He received stem cell therapy to extend his playing career and repair the cartilage. He was able to play an additional season of rugby thanks to the procedure.
22) Marquis Maze | Alabama Wide Receiver
Marquis Maze tore his hamstring in the final game of his collegiate career. He was suffering from immense pain and was unsure if he could play football again. The stem cell therapy he received helped him feel like he had a new leg and he was able to sign a free agent deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Leg and Foot
23) Ahmad Bradshaw | NFL Running Back
After the 2011 season, Ahmad Bradshaw received stem cell therapy to help heal his right foot. The stem cell therapy worked for a majority of the 2012 season, but he had to replace the screw in his foot after the 2012 season.
24) Cristiano Ronaldo | Professional Footballer
Cristiano Ronaldo has been one of the biggest supporters of stem cell therapy. He has received the treatment multiple times over his career. He received the treatment in 2017 after he tore his hamstring. The therapy is certainly working as he continues to perform at a top level deep into his career.
25) David Payne | Olympic Hurdler
David Payne won a silver medal in hurdling at the 2008 summer olympic games. In 2011 he suffered a shin injury that would not heal with conventional therapies. He underwent stem cell therapy before the 2012 summer olympics to try and snatch the gold medal. He recovered, but sadly was not able to win the gold medal.
26) Prince Amukamara | NFL Cornerback
Prince Amukamara suffered from a broken metatarsal bone in his foot that was not healing properly in 2011. He received stem cell therapy in order to help speed up the healing process. The therapy worked and he continues to have a strong NFL career.
27) Dez Bryant | NFL Wide Receiver
Dez Bryant suffered a broken bone in his right foot during the 2015 NFL season when he was playing for the Cowboys. He needed surgery to repair the damage. Bryant and his team wanted him to get back in action as soon as possible. Stem cells were removed from his hip and injected into his ankle in order to speed up his recovery. Bryant was able to return to action just seven weeks after his injury, which was ahead of schedule.
28) Andrew Heaney | MLB Pitcher
Andrew Heaney suffered a partial elbow ligament tear and attempted to use stem cell therapy and physical rehab to avoid surgery. Sadly, the therapy did not end up working and he had to undergo Tommy John surgery. This makes it that much more important to choose a stem cell clinic that has effective treatments.
29) Bartolo Colon | Professional Pitcher
Bartolo Colon missed all of the 2010 MLB season with an elbow injury. He received a stem cell transplant in order to repair the damage from years of playing baseball. The treatment was an incredible success. He went on to play in the MLB until 2018.
30) Terrell Owens – Retired NFL Wide Receiver
After playing in the NFL for 15 years, Terrell Owens’ joints have certainly taken a beating. That is why he decided to receive stem cell therapy on both knees, both shoulders, both elbows, and his right hip. Owens recently worked out with current NFL wide receivers and looked to be in incredible shape, so it’s safe to say the treatment worked.
31) Gordie Howe | Detroit Red Wings
Gordie Howe is a legendary hockey player as he played in the NHL for 26 seasons. In 2014, Howe suffered a major stroke which affected his memory and the right side of his body was paralyzed. He heard about stem cell treatment, but had to go to Mexico in order to receive the treatment. He received a dose of 100 million stem cells in his spine and quickly recovered. He was able to go fishing in a matter of weeks.
Jack Nicklaus is one of the greatest golfers of all time. The 18-time major winner suffered from back pain that inhibited his ability to play golf and enjoy his life. That all changed in 2015 when he met with a doctor in Germany. He received 10 stem cell injections into his back in 2016. The pain he had dealt with subsided a few months after the treatment.
33) Rafael Nadal | Tennis Player
Rafeal Nadal has had a historic tennis career. His tough playing style has led to a number of long-term joint issues. He has received PRP therapy on his knees several times throughout his career. He also received stem cell therapy injections in his back to restore cartilage. He has been able to continue to play at a high level and win major tournaments.
34) A.J. Foyt | Nascar Driver
A.J. Foyt is a legendary figure in the world of automobile racing. Throughout his career he has dealt with car wrecks, killer bees, a bulldozer accident, heart ailments, and two staph infections. He traveled to Mexico to receive stem cell therapy for his shoulder and ankles. His ankle and shoulder have improved since receiving the treatment.
35) Jose Contreras | Former MLB Pitcher
Jose Conteras was a fantastic MLB pitcher for nearly a decade. He suffered from chronic pain in his joints throughout his career. He received PRP therapy to avoid surgery and continue pitching in the MLB. The treatment seemed to work as he was able to continue playing professionally for a number of years.
36) Daisuke Matsuzaka | Professional Pitcher
Daisuke Matsuzaka was one of the most sought after pitchers in the world back in 2006. He played for the Red Sox for a number of years before suffering from injuries. He used PRP therapy to improve his joints, but sadly needed to have Tommy John surgery in 2011. He continues to pitch over in the Japan professional baseball league.
37) Max Scherzer | MLBPitcher
Max Scherzer is an accomplished MLB pitcher. During the 2019 season he suffered from a strain in his rhomboid muscle. He was able to continue pitching for the rest of the season and the postseason. He was vital in contributing to the National’s world series win in the 2019 season.
38) Chuck Liddell | Former MMA Fighter
Chuck Liddell is one of the most famous MMA fighters in the world. During his career he has suffered many concussions and dealt with joint swelling. He traveled to the BioXcellerator clinic in Medellin to receive treatment for these injuries. Liddell is hopeful that stem cell therapy will help prevent any chance of CTE and continue to reduce the swelling in his joints.
39) Chael Sonnen | MMA Fighter
Chael Sonnen is a retired MMA fighter who is widely considered the greatest fighter who never won a UFC championship. Sonnen suffered from aches and pains from his long career and decided to visit the BioXcellerator clinic to receive treatment. The treatment was successful and he is feeling stronger and in less pain.
40) Gilbert Melendez | MMA Fighters
Gilbert Melendez was suffering from concussion symptoms, pain, pectoral muscle damage, and calcification of a bruise in his leg from a fight. Melendez decided to travel to the BioXcellerator clinic in order to receive stem cell therapy for these nagging deliveries. The treatment has been working for him as he continues to recover. Melendez hopes to continue to fight for UFC when his injuries are all taken care of.
41) Frank Mir III | MMA Fighter & Professional Wrestler
Frank Mir has the longest uninterrupted tenure of any fighter in UFC history from 2001 to 2016, which is incredible. He has suffered from a number of injuries throughout his career. He traveled to the BioXcellerator clinic in order to recover from injuries and continue to fight. He was able to fully recover and begin training for his next fight. Mir is hoping to continue to fight and have one more UFC fight.
42) Eryk Anders | MMA Fighter
Eryk Anders is a UFC fighter and former college football player for the Alabama Crimson Tide. The fighter has been fighting in the UFC for a few years. He has suffered from various joint injuries. He received stem cell therapy in order to continue to fight and recover from his injuries.
43) Rickey Dixon | Former NFL Cornerback
Rickey Dixon was a standout cornerback both in college and the NFL. Sadly, he was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s Disease from his time playing. He has turned to stem cell therapy in order to help fight off the disease and improve his quality of life. Dixon continues to fight ALS and hopes that continued stem cell research will lead to a cure.
44) Godfrey Ingram | Former Professional Footballer
Godfrey Ingram is a retired professional footballer who scored more than 270 goals throughout his career in England and the United States. His knees were in bad shape and he underwent stem cell therapy to rejuvenate them. Shortly after his treatment, he was able to play a soccer tournament in Hawaii where he was named MVP.
45) Ray Lewis | Former NFL Linebacker
Ray Lewis is one of the most prolific and high-profile NFL linebackers in the history of the game. He suffered from a triceps tear in the 2012 NFL season. Lewis wanted to keep playing, but he was still recovering from his injury. He opted to travel to Europe to receive stem cell therapy to recover more quickly. The treatment worked and he was able to play in the Raven’s run to their 2013 Super Bowl victory. He led the NFL 2013 postseason in tackles during the Superbowl run.
46) Peyton Manning | Former NFL Quarterback
Peyton Manning is one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time. During his NFL career he suffered from a number of injuries, including a nagging neck injury. Before the 2011 season he underwent surgery a number of times to correct the issue. He received stem cell therapy in order to continue playing football. He went on to play four more NFL seasons, including winning the 2015 Super Bowl.
47) Taylor Gold | Olympic Snowboarder
Taylor Gold competed in the 2014 Winter Olympics and has won several championships. Sadly, he shattered his kneecap in 2016 and had to undergo extensive surgery. He felt that his knee never returned to 100%. He underwent stem cell therapy in order to get back into olympic form in 2018. He has been slowly improving since the treatment and hopes to return to the Winter Olympics in 2022.
48) Owen Franks | Professional Rugby Player
Owen Franks was planning on playing in the Rugby World Cup when he tore his right shoulder during a match. The surgery would have put him out of the world cup. His team opted for stem cell therapy in lieu of surgery. The treatment worked better than Franks or his team could have imagined. He was playing pain free relatively soon after the treatment and played in the world cup as well.
49) Niklas Kronwall | Former NHL Defenseman
Niklas Kronwall was an incredible NHL defenseman who played more than 950 games in the NHL. He suffered from poor knees and knee pain in the later half of his career. He received stem cell treatment after the 2016 season during the summer. The treatment helped alleviate the pain. Kronwall was able to play in the NHL through 2019 after receiving the treatment.
50) Kirk Barton | Former NFL Player
Kirk Barton tore his PCL, MCL, meniscus, and shoulder multiple times throughout his career. After his career in the NFL, he continued to suffer pain in his knees and shoulders. He opted to receive stem cell therapy in order to alleviate his pain. The treatment made him feel like he had a new knee.