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Andre Johnson Received Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy on High-Ankle Sprain

Oct 1, 2010 – 6:51 PM
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Stephanie Stradley

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Andre Johnson received platelet-rich plasma therapy (commonly known as PRP) to treat his high-ankle sprain, a source told FanHouse.

The injury has left the Pro Bowl wide receiver day-to-day for Sunday's game against the Oakland Raiders. Johnson reinjured his ankle against the Cowboys in a loss on Sunday.

A source told FanHouse that the Texans have used platelet-rich plasma therapy to aid a number of players in healing injuries. The Texans would not confirm Johnson received this form of treatment, citing their policy not to discuss specific health treatment procedures. Johnson's representatives did not respond to a message left by FanHouse.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy is, in a nutshell, using the body's own substances to aid healing. A doctor removes blood from the patient's body, spins the blood in a special centrifuge that concentrates platelets, and then re-injects the platelets into the injured area. The process is used in many sports -- perhaps the most notable example was the use of PRP in getting Hines Ward and Troy Polamalu healthy enough for Super Bowl XL.

In recent years, it has been used for non-athletes, as well, but only those who can afford the expensive treatments. This is primarily because the efficacy of the treatment has not been established through enough studies for insurance companies to warrant spending money on the process.

Some types of injuries respond better to the treatment. Often, players with high-ankle sprains miss a number of games but Johnson was able to play against the Cowboys after receiving this type of injury the week before. Logically, either the injury was not severe or Johnson used some advanced healing methods.

However, he did not have an effective game, at least by his standards, so the Texans may want to give Johnson more time to rest his ankle, regardless of the treatment. Johnson did not practice this week, but did some running on the field on Thursday.
Filed under: Sports
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