Joel Sherman rings in on A-Rod and his meeting with the feds today -
Alex Rodriguez returns to a danger zone today. He faces the feds in Buffalo, and they are interested in what he knows about Dr. Anthony Galea.
A-Rod associates say there is nothing to worry about. This is about Galea, who is dealing with drug charges in his native Canada and an FBI investigation in the States involving illegal performance enhancers.
A-Rod is expected to tell investigators he was directed to Galea by chiropractor Mark Lindsay, who was authorized to work with Rodriguez by Dr. Marc Philippon, who performed hip surgery on A-Rod on March 9, 2009.
Rodriguez, The Post has learned, will claim he received five sessions of platelet replacement therapy, which he feels greatly accelerated his healing process and enabled him to get back to the majors by early May.
Rodriguez is planning to insist he had no prior relationship with Galea and never received any illegal drugs such as HGH.
If this is all true and verifiable, then this will be a minor inconvenience in the most serene, satisfying spring of Rodriguez’s Yankee life. The problem, obviously, is if Rodriguez is proved to be lying.
Rodriguez, as he has all spring, refused to directly discuss Galea yesterday morning in our 20-minute chat. But he did talk broadly about how issues like this impact his ultimate baseball legacy.
“In the past I said things, didn’t live up to them and disappointed people,” A-Rod said. “What I notice this time is that when I removed the emphasis from my legacy, from the results, and made it just about winning and enjoying the game, the energy all around me changed for the positive, especially in the clubhouse. And because of that I have never had more fun playing.”
“I finally figured out to make the game the priority,” Rodriguez said. “Ultimately I am a baseball player. This is what I do best and what I should be concentrating on: Enjoy the moment, enjoy the game. Once I got that, I made it good for me, my team and my teammates.”
Will this hold? Alex’s history screams to be cautious. He could say something dumb to the feds.
Here’s more on this platelet replacement therapy procedure via Arthritis Today Magazine -
The platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, procedure takes a small amount of a patient’s blood and rotates it in a centrifuge to separate red blood cells from platelets. Then the concentrated platelets are re-injected into the damaged area – elbows, knees, shoulders, hips and Achilles tendons. The platelets release growth factors that theoretically help the tissue recover, with the patients ideally improving within a few weeks.
Physicians report that the demand for PRP has soared after pro golfer Tiger Woods received injections to accelerate healing after knee surgery. And two Pittsburgh Steelers, Troy Polamalu and Hines Ward, had the procedure before the team’s Super Bowl victory in 2009.
But despite such positive personal stories and high-profile successes, some orthopaedic surgeons remain cautious about the spread of PRP, saying that not enough substantial research has been done on its effects to push it widely.
A study published in January in the Journal of the American Medical Association, for example, one of the first rigorous tests of this technique, found that PRP injections were no better than placebo shots of salt water for patients with Achilles tendinopathy, a condition that causes pain just above the heel bone.
“It’s clearly hyped too much,” says Stephen C. Weber, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon in Sacramento, Calif.
But others have embraced PRP, saying science simply hasn’t caught up to what they are seeing in their patients.
Platelet-rich plasma therapy represents “the beginning of a seismic change in orthopaedics,” says Rocco Monto, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon in West Tisbury, Mass. “Most of my colleagues have dipped their toes in the water and are finding early success.”
The Scientific American also has a good feature on this procedure entitled: Is Platelet-Rich Plasma an Effective Healing Therapy?