Garrett Richards Newsbeat
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
What’s Richards’ secret? Would you believe orthobiologics? Here’s the story:
[The] 28-year-old is the latest player to turn to orthobiologics, the class of treatments that includes stem cells and PRP, in hopes of healing an injury. While clinical studies have shown great success with those who use orthobiologics, they are not yet a panacea for the pervasive elbow injuries in baseball for two reasons: They work only on partial ligament tears, like Richards’, and medical studies have yet to validate their efficacy independent of other treatments run concurrently.
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Today, Garrett Richards is darting 98-mph fastballs again. “I feel as good as I ever have throwing a baseball,” he said Monday from Tempe Diablo Stadium, where the Los Angeles Angels, perhaps the most Tommy John-addled team in baseball, expect to break camp with Richards as their opening day starter. The 28-year-old is the latest player to turn to orthobiologics, the class of treatments that includes stem cells and PRP, in hopes of healing an injury. While clinical studies have shown great success with those who use orthobiologics, they are not yet a panacea for the pervasive elbow injuries in baseball for two reasons: They work only on partial ligament tears, like Richards’, and medical studies have yet to validate their efficacy independent of other treatments run concurrently.
The lack of knowledge as to how orthobiologics work inside the body – while the proteins in stem cells and platelets are believed to regrow damaged tissue, doctors have yet to isolate best practices for particular injuries – speaks to the difficulties in true medical advances. Still, the desire of Richards and others to avoid surgery lends orthobiologics enough credence to warrant further studies.
“I truly think this kind of treatment has significant potential,” said Dr. Neal ElAttrache, a longtime orthopedic surgeon at the Kerlan-Jobe clinic in Los Angeles who introduced orthobiologics to Major League Baseball when he injected PRP into the elbow of Dodgers reliever Takashi Saito in 2008.
Saturday, October 15, 2016
And “Garrett Richards 2.0” – as he referred to himself – not only has given the Angels hope for a rebound after this nightmarish 2016 season, but he might have given hope to other pitchers with damaged elbows.
“I hope this opens doors for other guys,” he said. “You don’t have to get surgery right out of the gate. If you are fortunate enough to be able to go this route and have the timeline I did, why would you automatically go in and have yourself cut and miss two years of baseball?
“I hope this opens up some doors or at least puts a second thought in people’s minds. Before, people were just 100 percent ‘I have to have surgery.’ This is becoming a somewhat alternate route. It’s worth a shot, in my opinion.”
Posted: October 15, 2016 at 08:29 AM | 2 comment(s)
Thursday, September 29, 2016
It will be interesting to see how this treatment will work out.
Richards’ next step will be a game on Monday in instructional league. It will be his first time facing another team – albeit mostly low level minor leaguers – since his May 1 start at Texas.
Richards is scheduled for three instructional league outings, building up to about 50 pitches, and then a follow-up exam and imaging. If he clears those hurdles by mid October, he will be cleared for a normal winter and can be penciled into the Angels 2017 plans, without Tommy John surgery.
Posted: September 29, 2016 at 06:50 AM | 3 comment(s)
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