Stem Cell Procedure

For Patients

A stem cell procedure medical vacation in Panama is a comparatively inexpensive, dependable, and hassle-free way to have a stem cell treatment, procedure and/or preservation. A first-class hospital environment and well-trained doctors make taking such a brief medical vacation a rewarding experience. At Pacifica Salud, affiliated with the John Hopkins Medicine International, where your stem cell procedure surgeons are based, you can be assured of quality care at far more reasonable prices.

Stem cell procedures are appropriate for regenerative medicine and a multitude of other procedures. But before anything, you and your USA physician will discuss your medical history relevant to any possible procedures. A similar discussion will also occur with your surgeon in Panama. Both doctors will ask you to provide a detailed description of your interest in the procedure and speak frankly with you about the complete process. Based on your medical records and continuing discussions between you, your US-based surgeon and his or her Panama-based colleague, the optimum procedure indicated will be determined. You will also have a phone consultation before you come to Panama to outline steps and personal care prior to the surgery. During those phone conversations, you can also ask questions of your Panama surgeon. Click here to find out more

Your autologous adult stem cells

Our procedures are based on using your adult adipose derived stem cells—put simply, your fat. Your adult stem cells, also called adipose derived stem cells(ADSCs), are obtained from your body, so you may hear your fat referred to as ‘autologous tissue’—which means tissue from your own body that’s going back into your own body.

Extraction Process—Mini-liposuction

The entire procedure is simple and safe. You will be mildly sedated with a pill orally, then provided local anesthesia to the areas where fat is extracted. Your vital signs will be monitored. Your American trained Panama surgeon will make small incisions, hidden by natural skin creases, in an area near the desired liposuction site. Your surgeon then gently inserts a thin tube through the incision site and maneuvers the rod gently back and forth vacuuming fat. A hole near the tip of the tube connected to a large syringe enables fat to be suctioned into that syringe. Your surgeon determines when the proper amount of fat is extracted, and then lastly tapes the small incisions. You will most likely experience a moderate amount of pain and discomfort so your doctor will prescribe pain medication accordingly, likely Tylenol or similar.


The operation is performed under local anesthesia, which means quick, one-time injections into the small areas of the body to reduce any localized pain during the procedure. This fat extraction portion of the procedure can take anywhere from twenty to forty minutes. If you smoke, you will be asked to not smoke in the weeks prior to surgery. On the day of the surgery, it’s best to wear loose fitting clothing easy to slip on and off following the procedure. Fnd out more

After Extraction, then what?

The fat extracted is then processed to extract your stem cells. The above ‘process’ means the fat is put through a protocol of steps in a lab room next to where you are. Within that protocol is centrifugation, then other gentle processes to extract or ‘derive’ your stem cells. That provides a slurry of your cellular tissue referred to as ‘stromal vascular fraction’—the bodily tissue and fluid comprising and holding YOUR stems cells. Those are then used for the procedure you and your USA doctor have discussed, which may involve body site re-injection and/or IV (intravenous injection). Click here to find out more

Expansion, or Culturing

Most likely an expansion or growth process is part of that process as well. “Expansion’ means they are sent within minutes to another lab close by where they are cultured and ‘grown’. You can see that happening in the video on this website in the “Why TenSalud” section. After the culturing and growth, the cells are then put in a cryogenics storage unit for use the next time they’re needed, unless you need a very large volume right away, in which case those are prepared and used as needed.

Brief info on your Panama-based stem cell Surgeon

Joseph Setton, MD, our surgeon, works with Pacifica Salud.
Dr. Setton received his medical Diploma from the Technological and Higher Studies Institutes in Monterrey, México, attended the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and is a fellow of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery based in Garden Grove, California as well as the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, International Cell Surgical Society, and the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, among others. He has also completed a General Surgery course at the University of Santiago de Chile and a course in Aesthetic and Reconstructive Plastic Surgery at the Catholic University of Argentina. Dr. Setton attended a mini–residency program in Surgery at the Mount Sinai Medical Center, in Miami Beach, Florida Fnd out more

Possible Stem Cell Procedures

This will be up to you and your physicians.

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